Iraq Forces Struggle in Tikrit; 164 Killed in Battles

by , March 29, 2015

Some officials in Tikrit are saying that the cost of allowing U.S. airstrikes may have been too dear. They admit that the strikes are more precise and less likely to kill pro-government forces, but the army isn’t ready to take the place of the militiamen who have been forced away from the fighting.

At least 164 were killed and 106 were wounded.

At least 17 security personnel have been killed in Tikrit since operations resumed on Thursday. Another 100 were wounded. That’s eight more killed and 89 more wounded than reported previously in this column. Militias repulsed an attack on their southern flank in the Shisheen neighborhood. Security forces killed 26 militants.

Six personnel were killed and 14 were wounded when militants attacked an army base in Dujail. At least two suicide bombers were involved.

In Baghdad, seven people were killed in three bombings.

A bomb killed a soldier in Tarmiya.

In Mosul, militants killed a woman who ran as a candidate in provincial elections. Two Iraqi officers were executed. Airstrikes killed a militant leader, and left at least 39 more dead.

Gunmen killed a muezzin in Abbara. A roadside bomb wounded two policemen.

An airstrike in Baaj wounded a militant leader who is suspected of being former Saddam V.P. Izzat al-Douri.

An airstrike killed 22 militants in Qayara.

In Garma, fourteen militants were killed.

Eleven militants were killed during an airstrike on a weapons manufacturing site in Zummar.

Ten more militants were killed during an attack in Sinjar on Saturday.

In Falluja, four militants were killed , when helicopter gunships set off large explosions at a warehouse. At least three more were killed in this or another strike. Six militants were killed in clashes.

A Coalition airstrike in Ramadi killed several militants.

Read more by Margaret Griffis