Iraqi forces have destroyed hidden "Islamic State of Iraq and Syria" (ISIS) bases that the group had set up in remote areas of Diyala province, the Diyala Operations Command said Friday (April 6th).
Since Monday, command forces, along with forces from the Iraqi army, police and air force, have been carrying out a large-scale operation to search areas between Qara Taba district and Hamreen Lake in north-east Diyala, said commander Lt. Gen. Muzhir al-Azzawi.
They have uncovered several militant bases located in remote areas, which were well camouflaged to avoid detection by aerial monitoring and surveillance, he told Diyaruna.
"We have destroyed eight safehouses and three underground shelters connected through tunnels that were being used by the terrorists," he said.
Iraqi forces "have burned down four boats, four vehicles and three motorcycles the terrorists kept in those bases, blown up ammunition stores, and destroyed food supplies, power generators and three tents used for camouflage", al-Azzawi said.
ISIS remnants reduced to small groups
In conjunction with the operation, a Diyala police command intelligence force carried out a special operation deep inside the area of Wadi Thalab, north-east of Baquba.
The force "destroyed other terrorist bases that included three large safehouses, blew up two explosive belts and burned down four motorcycles and a small solar power facility", said al-Azzawi.
Two militants who were present inside the safehouses at the time of the raid were killed, he added.
These operations aim to "cleanse all uninhabited areas in Diyala province of remaining terrorist elements", he said, noting that the local population is co-operating with Iraqi forces through providing accurate intelligence.
"ISIS is finished in the province and no longer has any presence other than in the form of gangs or small groups, each comprising no more than three or four individuals," he said.
These formations are limited in number, and operations to hunt them down continue unabated, he added.
"We have achieved good results and prevented the enemy from taking positions that would allow them to reorganise and regroup," he said.