Iraqi forces have recaptured two villages north of the capital Baghdad as part of an assault to recapture the city of Tikrit in Salahuddin province, the Ministry of Defense said.
A media release by the ministry said that with the support of army aviation, troops of the 5th Mechanised Infantry Division of the Iraqi army, backed by Shi'ite fighters, have seized Albu Bakir and Albu Awad villages from Islamic State (IS).
The villages, which are part of Diyala province, lie close to Salahuddin province.
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