POST Online Media Lite Edition


Iraqi army takes over Kirkuk as Kurdish Peshmerga flee

Staff Writer |
Kurdish Peshmerga troops left the city of Kirkuk on Monday after Iraqi troops captured vital installations in and around the city, Baghdad's army said.

Article continues below

This is the latest moves in a standoff that arose from a vote for Kurdish independence last month.

Officials said the K-1 military base is now under Iraqi army control, as are oil fields in resource-rich Kurdistan province.

The Kurdish military peacefully withdrew from the Maktab Khaled and Tal a-Ward regions, south of Kirkuk, with the Iraqi Federal Police now controlling the area.

Clashes broke out, though, between the Kurdish Peshmerga and troops of the al-Hashd al-Shaabi, or Popular Mobilization Forces - one of Iraq's pro-government independent militias - south of the city, Iraqi News reported on Monday. It said at least 30 Peshmerga troops were hospitalized.

The Iraqi army turned its attention to the Peshmerga after Kurdistan, a semi-autonomous region of Iraq, voted overwhelmingly for independence last month - a referendum opposed by Baghdad.

What to read next

Kurds block Iraqi forces' access to Kirkuk oil fields, Iran closes borders
Iraqi Kurds vote in independence referendum, Iraq closes borders
Iraqi federal court annuls Kurdish independence referendum