BAGHDAD, Sept. 3 (Xinhua) -- An Iraqi army officer was killed on Thursday during an operation to hunt down Islamic State (IS) militants in Salahudin province, while two border guards were killed in an IS attack in Anbar province, police sources said.
Iraqi army and police forces launched in the morning an operation designed to hunt down IS militants in the al-Tharthar desert area in the western part of Salahudin, and managed to destroy several IS hideouts and found caches of weapons and ammunition, a local police officer Mohammed al-Bazi said.
During the operation, a roadside bomb planted by IS militants was detonated near an army vehicle and killed an officer and wounded three soldiers aboard, al-Bazi added.
In another incident, two border guards were killed and two others wounded when IS militants attacked their headquarters near the Iraqi-Saudi border in the southwestern part of Anbar, a provincial police source said.
The attack sparked a fierce clash between the two sides, which also resulted in the killing and wounding of a number of the attackers who fled the scene, the source added.
IS militants are still active in the desert areas in Salahudin and Anbar which stretch to the border with neighboring countries of Syria, Jordan, and Saudi Arabia.
The security situation in Iraq has been improving since Iraqi security forces fully defeated the IS militants across the country late in 2017.
However, IS remnants have since melted in urban areas or deserts and rugged areas, carrying out frequent guerilla attacks against security forces and civilians. Enditem