Eleven Iraqi soldiers were killed in an overnight attack by Islamic State (IS) fighters against their base in the eastern province of Diyala, a military source and provincial governor said Friday.
“Eleven soldiers… have been killed during an attack carried out by the Islamic State… targeting a base of the army,” a senior military official based in Diyala told AFP on condition of anonymity.
The attack took place “around 2.30am (23:30 GMT) against a base in the Hawi al-Azim area,” the source added.
Diyala province governor Muthanna al-Tamimi confirmed the death toll, according to the Iraqi News Agency.
But he also hit out at the Iraqi army, alleging they were caught unprepared.
“The main reason [for this attack] is negligence on the part of soldiers, because the base is fortified,” he said.
“There is a thermal camera, night vision goggles and a concrete watch-tower.”
IS took over large swathes of Iraq and Syria in 2014.
Iraq declared the defeat of IS in December 2017, but a low-level insurgency by the Sunni group has persisted in the country, flaring up at various points.
IS claimed a bombing against a market in Sadr city, a Shia suburb of the capital Baghdad, that killed dozens of people in July last year.