Kirkuk (IraqiNews.com) Some United States troops arrived in Kirkuk province late Tuesday, a Kurdish MP and an official security source were quoted saying.
Mohamed Othman, a Kurdish parliamentarian from the Patriotic Union of Kurdistan, told Dwarozh website that a U.S. force arrived Tuesday night at Kirkuk. “The United States had previously promised to send a force to settle in the province and protect citizens,” he said.
Othman said the forces arrived at the K1 military base, arriving from Erbil via Dibis.
“ A joint operation room will be formed, comprising all of Kirkuk’s military and security forces,” Othman added, noting that Kurds would “actively” partake in that task force.
Shafaq News confirmed the information, quoting an official security source saying that nearly 40 Hummer vehicles entered the province.
The source added that the troops were meant to maintain security at the province.
Iraqi forces took over Kirkuk in mid October as a response to an independence referendum Kurdistan Region held in September for independence from Iraq. Kirkuk is one of the areas where Baghdad and Erbil dispute sovereignty.
Iraqi forces took over oil and military facilities in the province from Kurdish troops. The takeover was mostly peaceful but some fatal clashes occurred.