Clashes between the army and armed Sunni tribesmen who sealed off a central Iraqi town have left 22 people dead, according to officials.

Police say the fighting broke out on Wednesday after tribesmen blocked roads leading to the Sunni town of Qara Tappah, about 120 km (75 miles) northeast of Baghdad.

Iraqi troops arrived to try and clear the city. Fierce clashes erupted and helicopters fired at the gunmen. Police say 15 gunmen and seven soldiers were killed.

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