Samarra, Iraq
Samarra, Iraq

Iran's Revolutionary Guard says one of its senior officials was killed Saturday while fighting the Islamic State in Iraq.

In a statement on its website Sunday, the Guard says that Brigadier General Hamid Taqavi was "martyred" while serving in an advisory role to the Iraqi Army defending Samarra, a city north of Baghdad. Samarra is home to the Al Askari Shrine, one of the most important Shi'ite shrines.

Reuters reports that Taqavi was killed by Islamic State sniper fire which also wounded several people who were with him.

Taqavi was a veteran of the eight-year Iran-Iraq War in the 1980s.

Shi'ite Iran has recently increased its role in combating Islamic State militants by providing military advice and training to the Iraqi army. It has denied sending combat troops.

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