Image courtesy of VOA/Wikimedia Commons.

Five oil workers were killed on Sunday when Islamic State militants launched attacks against two energy facilities in North Iraq.

Four employees at the AB2 gas compressor station near Kirkuk were killed early Sunday when the facility was attacked by militants, Reuters said.

Two security guards were also injured during the attack.

The attackers reportedly planted explosive charges around the facility and detonated five of the charges.

Security forced freed 15 employees who were hiding inside a separate room in the facility, Reuters said.

Sources told Reuters that the attackers are believed to have escaped to the Bai Hassan oil station about 15 miles away where they launched a second attack.

Sources told CNN that four IS militants stormed the Bai Hassan facility and took four Iraqi North Oil Company employees hostage later on Sunday.

The attackers were wearing explosives vests and three of the attackers reportedly set their vests off, destroying a storage tank, Reuters said.

The fourth attacker was killed by security forces and all four hostages were rescued.

An oil engineer at the facility was killed during the attack and half a dozen police officers were injured, according to Reuters.

The Islamic State affiliated Amaq news agency said IS militants were responsible for the Bai Hassan attack, CNN said.

Operations at the 55,000 barrel per day Bai Hassan facility were suspended after the attack.

Details about the facility’s restart have not been disclosed.


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