Baghdad (IraqiNews.com) Iraqi Popular Mobilization Forces are planning an offensive against mainly Kurdish separatist groups in Salahuddin province’s restive region of Tuz Khurmatu.
PMF media quoted on Tuesday Abu Reda al-Najjar, commander of the “northern axis” of the force’s operations, saying an operation is imminent to “clear the mountains overlooking Turkmen villages in Tuz Khurmatu”.
“Turkmen villages in the precinct occasionally witness attacks, most recently an attack with eight mortar shells this morning, which left a civilian dead and others wounded,” Najjar said.
According to the commander, the operation is particularly targeting the “White Flags”, a nascent entity composed of a number of separatist groups, most notably the Kurdistan Free Life Party (PJAK), a militia fighting for Iranian Kurds’ independence. “Security authorities possess precise information about those groups,” he explained.
“Our forces have started to bombard separatists’ locations with rocket launchers, making direct hits as a first step before the launch of operations to the areas from which they target civilians,” Najjar stated.