BAQUBA, Iraq, Jan. 6 (Xinhua) -- At least three people were killed Saturday in bombing attacks targeting an anti-IS tribal leader in Iraq's eastern province of Diyala, a provincial security source told Xinhua.
The attack took place in the evening when a booby-trapped car detonated near the guest house of Sheikh Haitham al-Houm, the leader of al-Nedah tribe in al-Nedah area, some 60 km east of Diyala's provincial capital Baquba," the source said on condition of anonymity.
Shortly after the car bombing, a suicide bomber detonated his explosive belt at the guesthouse, the source said.
Al-Houm's wife and two of his relatives were killed, the source said, citing police reports.
The Iraqi security forces sealed off the scene and launched investigation into the incident, while the troops conducted search campaign looking for more possible attackers in the area, the source added.
The attack came a day after al-Houm hosted a gathering of local Sunni tribal leaders at his guesthouse to announce a campaign of paramilitary tribal fighters against remnant of Islamic State (IS) militants and their sleeper cells in their areas east of Baquba city, which located some 65 km northeast of the Iraqi capital Baghdad.
Despite repeated military operations in Diyala Province, remnants of IS militants were still hiding in rugged areas near the border with Iran in eastern Diyala, as well as the sprawling areas extending from western part of the province to Himreen mountainous area.
Dozens of IS militants fled their former bases in Salahudin Province and Hawijah area west of Kirkuk after the Iraqi forces cleared these areas from the extremist militants during anti-IS offensives in the past few months.
On Dec. 9, Iraqi Prime Minister Haider al-Abadi officially declared full liberation of Iraq from IS militants after Iraqi forces recaptured all the areas once seized by the extremist group.
However, small groups of IS militants resorted to deserts and rugged areas looking for safe havens but the security forces are hunting them down from time to time.