Iraqi security forces say ISIS assault thwarted

Iraqi forces pushed back a dawn assault by ISIS militants in Al-Baghdadi, an Iraqi spokesman says.

Story highlights

  • Iraqi town's police chief among casualties in ISIS assault, official says
  • Militants tried to infiltrate residential compound near key air base in Anbar province

(CNN)Iraqi security forces said Wednesday they thwarted an attempt by ISIS militants to infiltrate a residential compound near a strategic air base in western Anbar province.

Col. Mohammed Ibrahim, spokesman for Iraq's Joint Operations Command, told CNN that the assault early Wednesday in the town of Al-Baghdadi involved suicide bombers and that the militants were killed.
Ibrahim would not say how many members of the Iraqi security forces were killed but confirmed the town's police chief, Lt. Col. Mashkoor al-Gighaifi, was among the casualties.
    Ibrahim said Iraqi forces were in control.
    Ayn al-Assad Air Base is about 15 kilometers (9 miles) south of Al-Baghdadi.
    A year ago, ISIS took full control of Al-Baghdadi, west of Ramadi, bringing the militants within a few miles of the base housing U.S. military personnel. Iraqi troops later retook the town.
    In a statement posted by ISIS supporters, militants claimed responsibility for the dawn assault involving six suicide bombers, who blew themselves up after hours of clashes with Iraqi forces.
    The militants said numerous "apostates" were killed, including Al-Baghdadi's police chief.
    ISIS started as an al Qaeda splinter group. The terror group now controls a territory roughly the size of Connecticut, stretching from northern Syria into central Iraq.
    Meanwhile, in Syria, Russian airstrikes have killed at least 471 civilians so far this month, including 127 children and 56 women, the Britain-based Syrian Observatory for Human Rights said Wednesday.
    In addition, the pro-opposition group said it has documented the deaths of 211 civilians this month, including 30 children and 20 women, by bombardments by Syrian President Bashar al-Assad's air force.
      CNN has not been able to confirm the deaths reported by the group independently.
      When Moscow began strikes in Syria in late September, Russian officials said they were coordinating with Assad, a close ally, and targeting ISIS and other terrorists. Russia has repeatedly denied targeting civilians.