Iraq army launches operation to retake Kirkuk from Erbil

TEHRAN, Oct. 13 (MNA) – Iraqi troops launched operations on Friday to retake Kurdish-held positions in the disputed oil province of Kirkuk as tensions soar after an independence vote last month, a general told AFP.

"Iraqi armed force are advancing to retake their military positions that were taken over during the events of June 2014," the general told AFP by telephone, asking not to be identified.

In 2014, when ISIL swept through areas north and west of Baghdad, many units of the Iraqi army collapsed and Kurdish Peshmerga forces stepped in to take over.

Russian Sputnik  agency also reported that Iraqi Prime Minister Abadi ordered to halt the entry of security forces into Kirkuk for 48 hours after kurdish Peshmerga lowered their flags and emptied their barracks in Taza and Bashir villages.

On the other hand, Kurdish authorities have sent thousands more Peshmerga forces to the oil region of Kirkuk to confront  Iraq's central government, the vice president of the autonomous Kurdistan region said on Friday.

News Code 128568


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