At least 17 Iraqi soldiers were killed in a fierce battle against jihadists south of Baghdad Friday while bombs in and around the capital left another 16 people dead.
The clashes took place in Jurf al-Sakhr, a small Euphrates River town on a road linking Sunni insurgents strongholds in the west to Shiite holy cities south of Baghdad.
"Seventeen soldiers were killed and three wounded during clashes with insurgents in Jurf al-Sakhr that lasted two hours this morning," an army lieutenant told AFP.
An army medic confirmed the death toll, with both sources saying 23 jihadists from the Islamic State of Iraq and Syria were also killed.
The mainly Sunni town, which lies in the north of Babil province, is the scene of almost daily fighting between pro-government forces and Sunni militants.
ISIS launched a sweeping offensive in northern Iraq on June 9, conquering the second city Mosul and large parts of the country's Sunni heartland.
نستخدم ملفات الكوكيز لنسهل عليك استخدام مواقعنا الإلكترونية ونكيف المحتوى والإعلانات وفقا لمتطلباتك واحتياجاتك الخاصة، لتوفير ميزات وسائل التواصل الاجتماعية ولتحليل حركة المرور لدينا...اعرف أكثر