According to al-Sumariya news, a statement released by the popular forces said they discovered mortars near the city and destroyed them.
It said ISIL militants intended to use the mortars to target the city’s holy shrine.
The Imamain al-Askariayn holy shrine in Samarra, located in the north of the capital city of Baghdad, is a pilgrimage site for Shia Muslims.
The shrine was built in 944 A.D. and contains the tombs of two Shia Imams (AS).
It has been targeted by extremists several times in the past few years.
The dome of the Shrine was destroyed in a terrorist bombing in February 2006 and its two remaining minarets were destroyed in another bombing in June 2007, causing widespread anger amongst Shia Muslims.