Peshmerga, Hashd al-Shaabi reportedly clash in northern Iraq

Published 13.10.2017 23:59
Updated 14.10.2017 02:01

Clashes have been reported between peshmerga forces and Shiite militia group Hashd al-Shaabi's Turkmen units in northern Iraq's Saladin province.

Doğan News Agency (DHA) said late Saturday that peshmerga forces targeted the militia group with mortar fire.

Saladin Deputy Governor Muhammed Abdulvahid told Anadolu Agency that the clashes started in Tuz Khurmatu city.

Unidentified attackers opened fire at security forces as they were defusing a bomb which was planted near a mosque, the governor elaborated.

Hashd al-Shaabi units then opened fire at the Patriotic Union of Kurdistan (PUK) party headquarters.

Clashes continue, while the number of dead and injured remains unknown.

A Tuz Khurmatu resident told DHA that the area was strategically important, stressing that if Iraqi forces decided to conduct a military operation to take the disputed Kirkuk province it would start from Tuz Khurmatu.

Tuz Khurmatu is located some 70 kilometers (44 miles) from Kirkuk and some 200 kilometers from capital Baghdad. The mostly Turkmen city has a population of 200,000 people.

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