“Security officials” in Iraq say that ISIS militants set off a staggering 21 car bombs in the government-held city of Ramadi on Wednesday, the New York Times reports. Ramadi is not far from the previously ISIS-held city of Tikrit, where Iraqi forces have launched a counteroffensive against the terror group in recent days. Both cities are fairly close to Baghdad:
The fighters attacking ISIS in Tikrit are a motley crew. From Reuters:
More than 20,000 troops and Iranian-backed Shi'ite Muslim militias known as Hashid Shaabi, supported by local Sunni Muslim tribes, launched the offensive for Tikrit 10 days ago, advancing from the east and along the east bank of the Tigris.
On Tuesday they took the town of al-Alam on the northern edge of Tikrit, paving the way for an attack on the city itself ... The army and militia fighters raised the national flag above a military hospital in the section of Qadisiya they had retaken from the militants, security officials said.
At least five individuals were killed in the Ramadi attacks.