Iraqi forces repel IS attacks in Salahudin, Kirkuk provinces

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Iraqi security forces on Saturday repelled attacks by Islamic State (IS) militants in the two provinces of Salahudin and Kirkuk, provincial security sources said.

In Iraq's northern central province of Salahudin, dozens of IS militants carried out attacks at dawn from four routes; three in Zarga area and the oil fields of Allas and Ajil in east of the provincial capital city of Tikrit, which located some 170 km north of Baghdad.

While the fourth targeted the security positions in Makhoul mountain in north of Tikrit, the source said on condition of anonymity.

The troops and allied paramilitary units, known as Hashs Shaabi, fought fierce clashes with the attackers while helicopter gunships and reinforcement troops rushed to the battleground, forcing the IS militants to withdraw after killing many of them and destroying several of their vehicles, the source said.

The predominated Sunni Arab province of Salahudin has been the scene of a major offensive by Iraqi security forces and Hashd Shaabi units, which managed to retake control of key towns of the province from the hands of IS militants who seized large part of it in June 2014.

In northern province of Kirkuk, six IS suicide bombers attacked a military base housing Kurdish forces, known as Peshmerga, in Dibis area in northwest of the city of Kirkuk, some 250 km north of Baghdad.

But the troops clashed with the attackers and forces them to blow up their explosive vests, leaving the suicide bombers and one Peshmerga member killed and five troops wounded, a local security source anonymously told Xinhua.

Iraq is currently witnessing a wave of violence since the IS terrorist group took control of parts of Iraq's northern and western regions in June 2014. Endit

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