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Islamic State, Iraqi forces in fierce battle near oil refinery: amateur video

Wednesday, April 15, 2015 - 00:45

Footage posted online purports to show Islamic State militants engaged in a fierce firefight with Iraqi forces as they battle for control of Iraq's largest oil refinery. Rough Cut (no reporter narration).

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ROUGH CUT (NO REPORTER NARRATION) Gunfire rang out and large dark plumes of smoke billowed into the air as Iraqi forces battled Islamic State (IS) militants on Saturday (April 11), after the extremist group launched a violent attack on Iraq's largest refinery in the northern city of Baiji, video posted on a social media website purported to show. Fighters, some dressed in military fatigues and identified in the footage as Islamic State militants, could been seen wildly firing their weapons, while a number of blazes raged dangerously close to oil storage containers. Reuters is unable to independently verify the content of this video which was obtained from a social media website. On Monday (April 13), IS militants breached the security perimeter but were beaten back by security forces and coalition air strikes, local officials said. The refinery was under siege for five months after Islamic State militants tore through Iraq last summer. Security forces drove the militants out of the nearby town of Baiji in November. They subsequently withdrew, leaving a single supply line to the refinery, which the militants cut on Sunday (April 12), surrounding the complex once again and setting fire to three oil storage tanks. Salahuddin provincial council member Khazaal Hammad said security forces and coalition air force "dealt with the advancing militants". Hammad said the situation was under control, although the refinery is within range of fire from outside the perimeter of the complex, which covers an area of around 20 square kilometers.

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Islamic State, Iraqi forces in fierce battle near oil refinery: amateur video

Wednesday, April 15, 2015 - 00:45