Iraq News
Security

36 ISIS remnants killed, arrested in Diyala this month

By Khalid al-Taie

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Iraqi security forces on July 14th comb the al-Azim area in Diyala province as part of ongoing operations to rid the province of ISIS remnants. [Photo courtesy of the Diyala Police Command]

The Diyala provincial council security committee announced on Tuesday (July 24th) that 24 "Islamic State of Iraq and Syria" (ISIS) remnants have been killed and 12 others arrested since the beginning of July.

Ongoing security operations in the province have dealt a "serious blow" to the group, as its elements no longer have any place to shelter, said committee head Sadiq al-Husseini.

"Twenty four terrorists have been killed and 12 others arrested, including four prominent leaders in ISIS’s so-called Wilayat Diyala, during search operations this month in several areas in Diyala, especially in the Hamreen basin, al-Azim and Balad Ruz," he told Diyaruna.

Security forces also have destroyed "15 large terrorist hideouts, six in Balad Ruz, four in Hamreen, three in al-Mutaybija, and two in the areas of Canaan and Bahriz," al-Husseini said.

Many of these hideouts contained weapons, explosive materials and equipment for making car bombs and improvised explosive devices (IEDs), he said.

Use of modern technologies

Security forces have been using modern technologies, most notably drones, during their comb-and-search campaigns, al-Husseini said.

Drones are especially useful to monitor and survey highland areas and rugged valleys that cannot be reached by military units, he said, noting that they have helped security forces discover seven rest-houses (shelters for suicide attackers) in al-Mutaybija.

The "terrorist threat" in the province is in decline thanks to the security efforts, al-Husseini said, but efforts will continue until all ISIS remnants are eliminated and their hideouts destroyed.

The Diyala police forces since Saturday (July 21st) have been conducting a large-scale operation in villages south of Balad Ruz, most notably al-Dima, Manhal, Bandar and Qara Gul, he said.

The operation is the latest in a series of security campaigns aimed at ousting the remaining ISIS elements from the province.

Meanwhile, 24 persons wanted for trial on various criminal and terrorist charges in Diyala have voluntarily surrendered themselves to the security forces during the current year, including five wanted individuals this month alone, al-Husseini said.

"This indicates a development in security activity in the province and also reflects the growing confidence in the security establishment and the justice system," he added.

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