At least 163 Daesh militants, along with eight civilians, were killed across Iraq on Thursday and Friday in clashes that remain ongoing, according to Iraqi security officials.
Iraq’s Defense Ministry released a statement on Friday in which it said “at least 124 Daesh terrorists” had been killed in air operations carried out in the Anbar, Kirkuk and Saladin provinces.
At least 47 other people, including 39 Daesh militants, were killed – and 23 others injured – on Thursday in separate attacks across Iraq, Iraq’s Interior Ministry said.
The ministry released a statement on Friday in which it said at least 20 Daesh militants had been killed – and a truck laden with hazardous explosive materials destroyed – in northern Iraq’s city of Baiji.
In a separate statement, the Interior Ministry said that another 12 Daesh militants had been killed in the Et-Tarimiyye district north of Baghdad. The same statement noted that an additional seven Daesh militants had been killed by Kurdish fighters in the Diyala province northeast of Baghdad.
The ministry went on to note that at least eight civilians, including police officers and soldiers, had been killed – and 23 injured – in ongoing clashes in the respective capitals of the Baghdad and Saladin provinces.
Iraq has suffered a security vacuum since June 2014, when Daesh overran the northern Mosul province and declared it part of its “caliphate” in Iraq and Syria.
Several massacres perpetrated by Daesh last year – and the forced deportation of minority populations from areas under the group’s control – led to the establishment of an international coalition against the extremist group.
Since mid-September of 2014, the U.S.-led coalition has carried out numerous airstrikes against Daesh targets in both Iraq and Syria.