BAGHDAD, Sept. 28 (Xinhua) -- Eight Islamic State (IS) militants were killed on Saturday in airstrikes conducted by the U.S.-led coalition aircraft in the central Iraqi province of Salahudin, the Iraqi military said.
Acting on intelligence tip-off, a joint force from Salahudin's Operations Command, backed by Iraqi and U.S.-led coalition aircraft, conducted an operation to hunt down IS militants in a desert area in west of the provincial capital Tikrit, said a statement by the media office of the Joint Operations Command (JOC).
During the operation, the coalition aircraft pounded IS positions and killed eight IS militants, while the troops destroyed four of their hideouts, of which one was booby-trapped, the statement said, adding that the militants were using the hideouts as warehouses for their various supplies.
According to the statement, the operation also resulted in the destruction of an IS shelter, three of their pick-up vehicles and a truck.
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.