BAGHDAD, Jan. 28 (Xinhua) -- A total of four people were killed and nine others wounded on Sunday in separate gunfire and bomb attacks in the Iraqi provinces of Diyala and Salahudin, security sources said.
In one of the attacks, a tribal leader Sheikh Turky al-Nadawi and his brother, a lawyer, were killed when unidentified gunmen opened fire on their car east of the Diyala's provincial capital Baquba, some 65 km northeast of Baghdad, Lt. Col. Ali al-Jaberi from Diyala's provincial police told Xinhua.
Sheikh al-Nadawi is a leader of a Sunni tribe known of fighting Islamic State (IS) in Nedah rural area east of Baquba.
Early in the month, IS militants carried out a twin suicide bomb attacks on the house of the anti-IS tribe's leader Sheikh Haitham al-Houm, leaving the tribal leader's wife and two of his relatives killed.
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.
Also in Diyala, a police statement said that the provincial police curried out an operation, led by the provincial police leader Maj. Gen. Jassim al-Saadi, to hunt down suspected IS militants in Mekheisa area near the town of Abu Saida, some 25 km northeast of Baquba.
The operation resulted in destroying an IS hideout and defusing a roadside bomb, along with seizing four containers filled with explosives, the statement said.
In neighboring Salahudin province, a policeman was killed and nine others wounded when a booby-trapped house detonated on them while the police force was searching an IS hideout in Mteibijah area in the eastern part of the province, Captain Hassan Ali al-Jubouri from the provincial police told Xinhua.
Colonel Kareem al-Aboud, the commander of the provincial special forces, known as Rapid Response, was among the wounded by the blast, Jubouri said.
Salahudin's security forces frequently carried out operations to hunt down IS militants who are using the sprawling rugged area that extends from the eastern part of the province to the IS redoubt in Mteibijah on the provincial border with Diyala province.
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 and individuals of IS militants are still capable of carrying out attacks against civilians and the security forces despite operations from time to time to hunt them down.