Two Iraqi journalists gunned down

Heavily armed assailants have shot dead a television journalist and his cameraman in the northeastern Iraqi province of Diyala.

Iraq’s Sharqiya news channel announced on Tuesday that the pair came under attack near the provincial capital, Baquba, located some 50 kilometers northeast of Iraq’s capital, Baghdad.

“Armed militias assassinated correspondent Saif Tallal and his cameraman Hassan al-Anbaki near Baquba,” a Sharqiya news presenter said.

The channel added that the journalists were sprayed with bullets while returning to Baquba from a reporting trip with Staff Lieutenant General Mizher al-Azzawi, the head of security command responsible for the volatile province .

Tallal and Anbaki had been working for the Arabic-language channel covering the Iraqi armed forces’ operations against the Daesh Takfiri terrorists in the troubled region.

The assailants managed to flee the scene before security forces arrived.

Iraq has been one of the most dangerous places in the world for journalists in recent years. Several journalists have been killed by Daesh terrorist group across Iraq over the past years.

In a separate development on Tuesday, a bomber detonated an explosives-laden vehicle at a checkpoint north of Baghdad, killing at least four policemen and wounding nine others. A senior intelligence officer has also been injured in the fatal attack.

The casualties were caused after a bomber targeted the convoy of Colonel Qassem al-Anbaki, the head of police intelligence in the Jdaidat al-Shatt area, which is located south of Baquba.

No group or individual has claimed responsibility for the incident. However, Iraq’s security forces in the past have accused the Daesh terrorist group of carrying out similar attacks.

Iraqi men clean up the damage in front of the al-Jawaher mall in eastern Baghdad the day after a bomb attack on January 12, 2016. (AFP photo)

The attack came a day after at least 45 people were killed in a hostage-taking attack and a series of bombings across the violence-ridden country.

The Takfiri group Daesh, which controls areas in northern and western Iraq, has carried numerous attacks in the country.

Daesh has suffered back-to-back defeats over the past weeks to the Iraqi military and allied volunteer fighters, chief among the setbacks being the militants’ loss of control of Anbar’s provincial capital of Ramadi, around 100 kilometers west of Baghdad. — PressTV.

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