Over 200 militants killed in air strike in Iraq, army says

Baghdad, Jun 16 (EFE).- More than 200 suspected Islamic militants were killed in an air strike in the western province of Al Anbar, the Iraqi army's regional operations command said Monday.

Warplanes attacked the militants as they appeared to be parading near Fallujah, a city that has been under the control of Sunni insurgents since January.

An Islamic State of Iraq and Syria, or ISIS, leader, identified as Yasser Nayi, was among those killed in the air strike, the army said.

The jihadist group is leading the Sunni insurgency spreading across Iraq.

About 400 militants hid in a four-story building in Fallujah when they saw the warplanes approaching, an army commander in the city told the official Iraquiya network.

Military aircraft fired rockets and machine guns at the building, killing about 270 Islamic extremists and destroying seven vehicles, officials said.

Air strikes killed about 70 militants in the city of Samarra and 17 others in Baquba, the capital of Diyala province, state television reported.

A total of 56 suspected Islamic militants were killed in a series of operations in Baghdad in the past 24 hours, the armed forces said.

The army killed 279 militants over the weekend in fighting in Saladin, Diyala and Nineveh provinces, armed forces spokesman Maj. Gen. Qassim Atta said on Sunday.

The casualty figures provided by the government have not been independently verified.

The rebels are holding Mosul, Iraq's second-largest city and the capital of Nineveh, and threatening to advance on Baghdad.