Baaj (IraqiNews.com) A commander with the Iranian elite Revolutionary Guards Corps was killed in operations by Iran-backed, Iraqi paramilitary forces against the Islamic State, an agency reported late Friday.
Haj Shaban Nasiri was killed during operations by al-Hashd al-Shaabi (Popular Mobilization Units) in Baaj, a desert area near the borders with Syria still witnessing an Islamic State presence, according to online Iranian newspaper Mashregh News.
The website said Nasiri had co-founded Badr Organization which fought the Saddam Hussein regime in the 1980s. Badr Organization is part of the PMU force, an alliance of more than 60 mainly Shia paramilitary groups fighting the Islamic State since 2014.
The website pointed to what it described as Nasiri’s “effective presence” in Syria, Iraq and Lebanon.
Iran is an ardent political and military supporter of Shia governments and militias in Iraq, Syria and Lebanon. IRGC fighters are actively engaged in fighting alongside President Bashar al-Assad’s forces against IS and rebel fighters in Syria.
PMUs enjoy Iraqi government recognition since November. They launched an offensive earlier this month to recapture areas near the Syrian borders from Islamic State militants, running simultaneously with government forces battles to retake Mosul, Islamic State’s largest stronghold in Iraq.
On field, al-Hashd al-Shaabi media said Saturday its troops recaptured Rambous village north of Baaj region. It has been taking over villages in neighboring Qairawan over the past few weeks.