Militants Attack Police Compound in Northern Iraq's Kirkuk
Islamic State militants armed with assault rifles and explosives attacked targets in and around the northern Iraqi city of Kirkuk early Friday, in an assault that appeared aimed at diverting Iraqi security forces from a massive offensive against the IS-held city of Mosul.
IS, which still controls a swath of territory stretching across Syria and Iraq, has a history of launching diversionary attacks on distant fronts when it comes under pressure. In April 2015, Iraqi forces announced the liberation of the central city of Tikrit. The following month, IS militants captured the western Iraqi city of Ramadi and the eastern Syrian city of Palmyra. Both cities have since been retaken by Iraqi and Syrian forces.