BAGHDAD, Aug. 30 (UPI) -- Battles between Iraqi security forces and Islamic State militants, as well as suicide attacks and U.S.-led coalition bombing, killed at least 26 soldiers, police officers and militants Sunday.
Much of the violence occurred in the country's western Anbar province, where Iraqi military forces, backed by Iran-trained Shia militias and U.S.-led coalition airstrikes, have been locked in battle with IS forces since a government offensive there began on July 13.
Xinhua news agency, quoting a provincial security source speaking on condition of anonymity, reports seven Iraqi troops were killed and 12 wounded during a battle with IS militants near the town of Baghdadi.
Nearby, the source said, four Iraqi army vehicles were destroyed after six roadside bombs detonated next to a convoy traveling toward Ain al-Asad military airbase.
Iraqi troops at a military post near the town of Haditha, in Anbar province adjacent to Baghdadi, used an anti-tank guided missile to kill an approaching suicide car bomber, but Xinhua reports a separate car bomber was able to detonate at the post, killing four troops and injuring two police officers.
On Aug. 25, Iraqi commandos were reported to have fended off a coordinated IS suicide car bomb attack in Ramadi, the capital of Anbar province, but another car bombing in the city on Aug. 27 killed Iraqi army commanders Maj. Gen. Abdulrahman Mehdi Abu Raghef and Brigadier Safeen Abdulmajeed.
Meanwhile, an explosive device went off in the al-Tajy district in northern Baghdad on Sunday, killing one police officer and injuring three others, IraqiNews.com quoted an anonymous security source as saying.
The Iraqi military and northern Iraq's Kurds have since early last year been warring with IS militants who spilled over from Syria and seized large swaths of western and northern portions of the country. A U.S.-led international coalition began bombing the militants in a campaign known as Operation Inherent Resolve.
The U.S. Department of Defense reported 15 coalition airstrikes in Iraq on Saturday hitting 10 towns and cities, including Baghdadi, where one strike destroyed two IS boats and two caches for improvised explosive devices, and in Ramadi, where an airstrike hit an IS tactical unit.
On Sunday, Xinhua quoted its security source as saying coalition airstrikes destroyed an IS car bomb factory at a village northwest of Ramadi, killing at least six militants, while Iraqi government airstrikes in the areas of al-Sejir and Albu Alwan near the IS-held city of Fallujah killed eight militants.