The extremist militants carried out five suicide bomb attacks on checkpoints in Samarra followed by a mortar attack in the city, killing at least three people and wounding over 20 others, as reported by the news outlet.
According to the BBC, the militants retreated after Iraqi warplanes launched fire, after hours of fighting with security forces.
Prior to that, in 2006 al-Qaeda attacked the al-Askari shrine in Samarra, one of the most important Shia shrines in the world. Since then Samarra has remained prone to sectarian violence.
The Sunni IS group began fighting the Syrian government in 2012, later expanding its operations to Iraq. IS considers Shia shrines to be blasphemous and has attacked several holy sites in the territories under its control in both countries.