TIKRIT, Iraq – Former deputy of ousted Iraqi dictator Saddam Hussein, has been killed along with eight other militants, Iraqi officials say. They claimd he died in fighting with government troops in Salahaddin province, north of Baghdad.
Izzat Ibrahim al-Douri, an ex-general in the Iraqi Army and the successor to Saddam Hussein as leader of the Baath Party, detonated himself on Friday in an attack on Iraqi forces in the newly liberated city of Tikrit, said Jassim Jabara, head of the Salahaddin province security committee.
Douri, believed to be 72 years old, assisted in the 1968 coup that brought Saddam Hussein to power. He was the most senior Baathist leader pictured as the King of Clubs in the US deck of cards of most-wanted Iraqis to evade capture by US forces, which put a $10 million bounty on his head.
Salahuddin governor Raed al-Jabouri says soldiers and allied Shia militiamen killed him on Friday in an operation east of Tikrit – a city that was recaptured by the government two weeks ago.
Iraqi forces, backed by US-led air strikes, have seized large areas from IS and its allies in recent months.
However, the jihadist group still controls swathes of northern and western Iraq, including the second city of Mosul.