According to Iraqi News, the trio of militants were killed on Sunday night after an altercation with the wild beasts in southern Kirkuk. Quoting local sources, The Times reports that the boars also injured a further five militants in the bitterly contested area.
Local Ubaid tribal chief and supervisor of anti-IS (Islamic State, formerly ISIS/ISIL) fighters, Sheikh Anwar al-Assi, told the paper the extremists were planning an ambush attack on local tribesmen who had formed anti-terrorist brigades. The tribesmen had fled to the mountains when IS captured the nearby town of Hawija three years ago.
Anwar al-Assi claims that at least eight terrorists had hidden in dense reeds near a local river known as the Zaghitoun, before they were set upon by the angry animals.
“It is likely their movement disturbed a herd of wild pigs, which inhabit the area as well as the nearby cornfields. The area is dense with reeds, which are good for hiding in,” he said.
Following the blunder, the terrorists allegedly “took revenge at the pigs,” according to Alsumaria News, however the exact method of retaliation was not clear.
The jihadists had reportedly executed 25 locals in the three days leading up to the boar attack.
“We know that a massacre took place in Hawija district through our sources. This will not be ISIS’ last massacre against citizens,” al-Assi said, adding that the true death toll was unknown as some people are still considered missing.
Hawija is a strategic location about 100 miles from Mosul and on the edge of the oil rich region of Kirkuk. The town is one of three strongholds in Iraq still under complete control of ISIS.
Local officials have repeatedly called on the Iraqi government to liberate IS-held regions in Kirkuk but the government have been focusing most of their efforts on driving the terrorist group out of the city of Mosul, their biggest stronghold in the country.