Iraqi security forces have killed a high-profile commander of Daesh Takfiri terrorist group along with two of his associates in the country’s eastern province of Diyala.
Furat al-Tamimi, a provincial official, told Arabic-language al-Sumaria television network that government troops ambushed Ali Mohamed Sahi and his two aides south of Beldruz town, which lies 30 kilometers (18.6 miles) east of the provincial capital city of Baquba, on Monday and shot them dead.
Tamimi said Sahi was among the first generation of Daesh leaders in Diyala, who pledged allegiance to the terror group.
Sahi fled Mosul to Diyala after the city was recaptured by Iraqi troops and pro-government fighters from Popular Mobilization Units, commonly known by the Arabic world Hashd al-Sha’abi, in July.
Tamimi noted that Daesh sleeper cells remain a serious security threat in Diyala.
Meanwhile, an Iraqi military source, requesting anonymity, said more than 35,000 members of Iraqi security forces and Hashd al-Sha’abi were killed during the three-year war against Daesh.
The source added that another 35,000 people also sustained injuries in the campaign.
He further noted that some the victims have suffered severe injuries; and need to be taken abroad for medical treatment but the Baghdad government cannot afford the substantial fees.
On December 9, Iraq’s Prime Minister Haider al-Abadi declared the end of military operations against the Daesh terrorist group in the Arab country.
“Our forces are in complete control of the Iraqi-Syrian border and I therefore announce the end of the war against Daesh,” Abadi told a conference in Baghdad.
Daesh began a terror campaign in Iraq in 2014, overrunning vast swathes in lightning attacks.
Iraqi forces then launched operations to eliminate Daesh and retake lost territory, and last month, Iraqi forces liberated Rawa, the last remaining town in the grip of the terror outfit.