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US-led airstrikes kill 34 IS militants in Iraq

BAGHDAD: More than 34 fighters of Islamic State (IS) died in 13 airstrikes by US-led coalition forces against the Sunni radical group’s positions in the northern Iraqi city of Mosul.

“Warplanes bombarded the Al Ghazlani military camp, which the IS has converted into a military headquarters and training camp,” the head of security in Nineveh province, Ibrahim al-Bayati, said.

Airstrikes also targeted the Al Tayaran district of Mosul, Iraq's second city, which the militants have controlled since June 10. The strikes killed two IS leaders, although Al-Bayati did not identify them, and also left 17 other militants wounded.

Black clouds of smoke rose from the areas targeted in the airstrikes and sirens wailed as ambulances were dispatched to provide emergency care to the wounded or transport them to hospitals.

Separately, the IS distributed a video on various web forums showing one of its preachers urging Mosul's residents not to grow impatient with “the delay in achieving victory” and inciting them to unite in the struggle “against the enemies of Islam and the Muslim nation.”

The IS, a coalition of jihadis, tribal militias and veterans of the late Saddam Hussein’s army, in June took control of a large swath of northern Iraq - including Mosul, a city of more than one million people - and it has proclaimed a caliphate in the parts of Syria and neighbouring Iraq under its control.

The US-led coalition’s air campaign against the IS and in support of Iraqi and Kurdish forces began in early August.