Hashd Al-Shaabi crosses Syrian border into Rojava

Members of al-Hashd al-Shaabi. File photo.

(BasNews) The Iraqi Popular Mobilisation Forces (PMF) or known as Hashd al-Shaabi, which arrived at the Iraq-Syria border two days ago, have crossed the border into Syrian Kurdistan (Rojava) and took control of two villages in Hasaka province in the region.

PMF managed a few days ago to reach the Iraq-Syria border in western Nineveh province in cooperation and coordination with Sinjar Resistance Units (YBS), a PKK-affiliated group in Sinjar.

Media activist Mohammed al-Ahmad from Hasaka told BasNews “Hashd al-Shaabi militia crossed the Syrian border at a depth of 10 km on Wednesday and took control of the villages of Qusayba and al-Bawardi, southeast of Hasaka.”

“We will deal with any attempts by Hashd al-Shaabi to enter the areas under the control of our forces,” said Talal Sillo, the spokesperson for the Syrian Democratic Forces (SDF), a US-backed alliance against the Islamic State (IS).

After reaching the border of Syria, Abu Mahdi al-Muhandis, commander of PMF Committee, said they would negotiate with Assad’s regime to cross the border into Syria, but a leader from People’s Defense Units (YPG), a PKK affiliate in northern Syria, told Asharq Al-Awsat paper that they oppose the Iranian presence in the region and refuse to be a bridge between the Iraqi PMF and Syrian regime.

The Commander of Rojava (Syrian Kurdistan) Security forces (Asayish), Jwan Ibrahim, called on his forces to beware of Iran and the Syrian regime as they are attempting to mobilise their [military] cells against us,” according to Asharq Al-Awsat.

Al-Muhandis said the military operations by the militia in the western areas of Nineveh aimed at clearing the Iraq-Syria border from IS militants and their forces will chase the presence of the militants even outside the Iraqi territories.

The media activist al-Ahmad told BasNews that the incursion of the “sectarian militia” forces into the borders of Syrian Kurdistan was in agreement with the Democratic Union Party (PYD), the Syrian wing of the PKK.

“The Syrian-Iraqi border is too long and it can not be fully controlled due to the battles in the area, therefore, limited violations may occur there,” said Dara Mustafa, a PYD official.

“When needed, our forces also cross the border for a few kilometers to chase some elements of the IS,” he argued.

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