5:16 pm - Friday May 23, 2594

Iraqi troops kill 40 gunmen

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BAGHDAD: Fighting between Iraqi government troops and al-Qaeda-inspired militants killed 40 gunmen and an army officer on Thursday near Baghdad, authorities said, as attacks continued elsewhere in the country ahead of elections this month.

In a statement posted on the Interior Ministry’s website, spokesman Saad Maan Ibrahim said that members of security forces foiled an assault by the militants on a military base in Youssifiyah, killing 40 “terrorist attackers.”

Maan said that one army officer was killed. Youssifiyah is about 20-km south of Baghdad. Police officials said the attack started late Wednesday and lasted for a few hours. They confirmed the military’s account and said the attackers withdrew after the arrival of security enforcements to the area.

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