Iraqi forces kill 20 IS militants near Syrian borders: military media

Baghdad ( Iraqi warplanes killed 20 Islamic State members near the borders with Syria, military media reported Monday, denying reports that the strikes targeted locations inside Syria.

The Defense Ministry’s War Media Cell said an airstrike was carried out at Tal Sufouq, a region at Nineveh’s borders with Syria, based on intelligence provided by the Popular Mobilization Forces.

The strike killed 20 militants and destroyed six vehicles, the statement said, denying reports that the strikes targeted locations inside Syria.

On Sunday, semi-official al-Sabah newspaper said Iraqi warplanes pounded IS locations in the Syrian city of Mayadin, Deiz Ezzour, before the group proceeded with plans to target holy Shia sites in the Iraqi cities of Najaf and Karbala, as well as the residence of the country’s top Shia cleric, Ayatollah Ali al-Sistani.

Iraqi forces regained control over the city of Mosul earlier this month, ending more than eight months of battles against the militants at their former capital. Coinciding with the campaign in Mosul, paramilitary troops, backed by warplanes, managed to take full control over the borderline with Syria and Jordan.

Islamic State now holds a few towns in Nineveh near the Syrian borders, most notably Tal Afar, which is widely reported to be the next target for military operations.



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