Four ISIS militants arrested in Kirkuk’s Hawija district

Iraqi security forces advance during fighting against Islamic State militants, in western Mosul, Iraq, Monday, March 6, 2017. (Photo Credit: Khalid Mohammed/AP File)

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SULAIMANI — Iraq’s Federal Investigation and Intelligence Agency said on Thursday (November 26) that four Islamic State (ISIS) militants were apprehended by the security forces in separate areas in southern Kirkuk’s Hawija district.

The ISIS militants were wanted by the judiciary in accordance with Article 4 of the Iraqi Counterterrorism Law and were involved in several acts against the security forces and civilians when the group had grip in the district, according to the federal intelligence agency, which is a part of the Iraqi interior ministry.

"Their statements were recorded and referred to the judiciary to receive their fair penalty,” read the statement.

Earlier on Thursday, Iraq’s National Security Service said that 700 kilograms of high-explosive (C4) material were seized that were stored for the purpose of staging large-scale “terrorist operations” in a number of governorates.

On Wednesday, the Popular Mobilization Forces (PMF) Authority said that its forces had killed an ISIS militants in Mutaibija area in Saladin governorate, according to the state media Iraqi News Agency (INA).  

More than 10,000 Islamic State fighters are estimated to remain active in Iraq and Syria two years after the militant group’s defeat, and their attacks have significantly increased this year, UN counter-terrorism chief Vladimir Voronkov said on August 24.

Voronkov told the UN Security Council that Islamic State fighters move freely “in small cells between the two countries.”

In December, 2017, Iraqi federal security forces, in cooperation with the Peshmerga forces and covered by the US-led coalition airstrikes, declared victory over Islamic State.

The militant group has resorted to guerrilla hit-and-run tactics after losing all its territory. It is especially active in the disputed areas claimed by Erbil and Baghdad, where security is not as tight.

(NRT Digital Media)