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38 killed in Iraq army offensive

Posted on Sep 04 2014 | IANS

Baghdad, Sep 3 : At least 38 people were killed Wednesday in air strikes and clashes across Iraq as government troops launched an offensive against militant groups and seized a small dam in the country's eastern region, security sources said.

Iraqi security forces backed by Shia militias and helicopter gunships retook control of a small dam on the Udhiem river after clashes with the Islamic State (IS) militant group in Baquba, the capital of Diyala province, 65 km northeast of Baghdad, Xinhua quoted a police source as saying.

The troops also managed to seize several villages around the dam, leaving an undetermined number of militants dead, including their local leader.

In Nineveh province, an Iraqi aircraft fired at a police station, believed to house militants in Mosul city, killing three women and injuring four others, police said, adding that the victims belonged to a single family.

In Salahudin province, Iraqi forces carried out air strikes on IS positions in north and east of the town of Duluiyah, some 90 km north of Baghdad, killing up to 20 militants, a police source said.

In a separate incident, an Iraqi helicopter gunship pounded a safe house of IS militants in Duluiyah, killing the leader of the local group and eight of his aides, the source added.

Also near Duluiyah, five militants of the IS group were killed and five others wounded in two bomb attacks.

Duluiyah has been under the siege of the IS group for several weeks, as the Sunni tribe of Al Jubour rejected the militants and fought them to prevent their presence in their town. The tribal fighters and police have repelled many attacks by the IS which tried to capture the town.

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