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Iraq says senior military commander killed while fighting IS

  • In this Thursday, June 9, 2016 photo, Iraqi security forces enter the southern neighborhoods of Fallujah as they advance on the Islamic State-held city of Fallujah, Iraq. As thousands of civilians flee an impending assault on  Fallujah, Iraqi forces are detaining military-aged men for questioning, determined to prevent militants from slipping away. But many residents say it was the heavy-handed tactics of Shiite-led security forces -- including arbitrary arrests -- that drove people into the arms of the extremists to begin with, paving the way for the IS takeover of the city more than two years ago. (AP Photo)

    In this Thursday, June 9, 2016 photo, Iraqi security forces enter the southern neighborhoods of Fallujah as they advance on the Islamic State-held city of Fallujah, Iraq. As thousands of civilians flee an impending assault on Fallujah, Iraqi forces are detaining military-aged men for questioning, determined to prevent militants from slipping away. But many residents say it was the heavy-handed tactics of Shiite-led security forces -- including arbitrary arrests -- that drove people into the arms of the extremists to begin with, paving the way for the IS takeover of the city more than two years ago. (AP Photo)  (The Associated Press)

  • Iraqi security forces evacuate an injured soldier during heavy fighting against Islamic State militants in Fallujah, Iraq, Wednesday, June 15, 2016. Fallujah has been locked in a cycle of conflict since 2003, when it emerged as a bastion of the insurgency against the Americans. Militant attacks and bombings were followed by sweeping arrest raids, which further stoked local grievances. In 2004, U.S. troops launched two massive assaults on the city, where they fought their bloodiest battles since Vietnam. (AP Photo/Anmar Khalil)

    Iraqi security forces evacuate an injured soldier during heavy fighting against Islamic State militants in Fallujah, Iraq, Wednesday, June 15, 2016. Fallujah has been locked in a cycle of conflict since 2003, when it emerged as a bastion of the insurgency against the Americans. Militant attacks and bombings were followed by sweeping arrest raids, which further stoked local grievances. In 2004, U.S. troops launched two massive assaults on the city, where they fought their bloodiest battles since Vietnam. (AP Photo/Anmar Khalil)  (The Associated Press)

  • Iraqi security forces evacuate an injured soldier during heavy fighting against Islamic State group militants in Fallujah, Iraq, Wednesday, June 15, 2016. Fallujah has been locked in a cycle of conflict since 2003, when it emerged as a bastion of the insurgency against the Americans. Militant attacks and bombings were followed by sweeping arrest raids, which further stoked local grievances. In 2004, U.S. troops launched two massive assaults on the city, where they fought their bloodiest battles since Vietnam. (AP Photo/Anmar Khalil)

    Iraqi security forces evacuate an injured soldier during heavy fighting against Islamic State group militants in Fallujah, Iraq, Wednesday, June 15, 2016. Fallujah has been locked in a cycle of conflict since 2003, when it emerged as a bastion of the insurgency against the Americans. Militant attacks and bombings were followed by sweeping arrest raids, which further stoked local grievances. In 2004, U.S. troops launched two massive assaults on the city, where they fought their bloodiest battles since Vietnam. (AP Photo/Anmar Khalil)  (The Associated Press)

Iraq's Defense Ministry says a senior military commander has been killed while fighting Islamic State militants in the country's north.

The Joint Military Command said late Tuesday that Brig. Ahmed Badr al-Luhaibi, the commander of Brigade 71st of Division 15, was killed by sniper fire during an operation to retake a village to the south of the Islamic State-held city of Mosul.

It said his death "will increase our determination to clear" the entire province of Nineveh, where Mosul is the provincial capital.

Mosul, Iraq's second-largest city, has been under IS control for two years.

Along with a major offensive to retake Fallujah, a city in western Anbar province, Iraqi troops have this week resumed small-scale operations to dislodge IS militants from areas to the south and southeast of Mosul.