BAGHDAD, Sept. 25 (Xinhua) -- Iraqi forces backed by the Iraqi and U.S.-led coalition aircraft on Wednesday carried out an anti-Islamic State (IS) operation in the provinces of Anbar and Salahudin, killing 12 extremist IS militants, the Iraqi military said.
A joint force from al-Jazira Operations Command and paramilitary tribal fighters conducted an operation to hunt down IS militants in areas located in northern Anbar province and the neighboring province of Salahudin, a statement by the media office of the Joint Operations Command (JOC) said.
During the operation, the Iraqi troops clashed with IS militants at an IS hideout in northeast of Ramadi, the capital city of Anbar province, killing seven of the extremist militants and destroying three of their vehicles which were loaded with explosives and ammunition, the JOC statement said.
During the battle, the Iraqi army's helicopter gunships chased three IS militants who fled the scene and killed them all, while the coalition aircraft pounded the same hideout and killed two more militants who were hiding inside, the statement added.
The security situation in Iraq was dramatically improved after Iraqi security forces fully defeated the extremist IS militants across the country late in 2017.
IS remnants, however, have since melted in urban areas or resorted to deserts and rugged areas as safe havens, carrying out frequent hit-and-run attacks against security forces and civilians.