Gunmen from the Daesh group attacked an army barracks in a mountainous area north of Baghdad, killing 11 soldiers as they slept, Iraqi security officials say.

The officials said the attack occurred in the Al-Azim district, an open area north of Baqouba in Diyala province.
The officials said the attack occurred in the Al-Azim district, an open area north of Baqouba in Diyala province. (AP)

Eleven Iraqi soldiers have been killed in an overnight attack by the Daesh group against their base in the eastern province of Diyala.

"Eleven soldiers... have been killed during an attack carried out by the Daesh... targeting a base of the army," a senior military official based in Diyala on Friday said, on condition of anonymity.

The attack took place "around 2330 GMT (2:30AM) against a base in the Hawi al Azim area," the source added.

Diyala province governor Muthanna al Tamimi confirmed the death toll, according to the Iraqi News Agency.

But he also hit out at the Iraqi army, alleging they were caught unprepared.

"The main reason (for this attack) is negligence on the part of soldiers, because the base is fortified," he said.

"There is a thermal camera, night vision goggles and a concrete watch-tower."

The Daesh group took over large swathes of Iraq and Syria in 2014.

Iraq declared the defeat of Daesh in December 2017, but a low-level attacks by the group has persisted in the country, flaring up at various points.

The group claimed a bombing against a market in Sadr city, a suburb of the capital Baghdad, that killed dozens of people in July last year.

A UN report last year estimated that around 10,000 Daesh fighters remained active across Iraq and Syria.

READ MORE: Deadly suicide bomb attack targets busy market in Iraq's capital

Source: TRTWorld and agencies