This file photo shows an F-16 fighter jet operated by the Iraqi air force.
A close aide to the leader of the Takfiri Daesh terrorist group has been killed along with 12 senior figures from the terror outfit in an Iraqi airstrike in a town in Iraq’s embattled western province of al-Anbar.
The Iraqi Joint Operations Command announced in a statement that Ahmed Hassan Abu Kheir, who was the brother-in-law of Ibrahim al-Samarrai, also known as Abu Bakr al-Baghdadi, the Daesh leader, was killed in an Iraqi airstrike in the town of al-Qaim, situated about 500 kilometers (about 310 miles) west of the capital, Baghdad, on Friday.
The statement added that tens of other Daesh extremists, including the 12 high-ranking ones, were killed and 11 others injured in the strike.
Daesh’s self-proclaimed governors of Fallujah and Forat region as well as the terror network’s deputy war minister, identified by the nom de guerre Abu Qasourah, were among the slain militant commanders.
The fatalities also included foreign militants from Russia and the North Caucasus region of Chechnya.
The Iraqi army statement further said that two car bombs, a weapons cache and a considerable amount of highly explosive materials were destroyed in the airstrike.
Separately, Iraqi tribal fighters, backed by army artillery units, managed to clear the village of Shiala, which lies south of the militant-held city of Mosul, from Daesh terrorists on Friday.
Iraqi government forces also destroyed a workshop used by Daesh members to make car bombs and various improvised explosive devices (IEDs).
The northern and western parts of Iraq have been plagued by gruesome violence ever since Daesh terrorists mounted an offensive in the country in June 2014.
Iraqi government forces, backed by fighters from allied Popular Mobilization units, have been pushing the militants out of the country’s territory.

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