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Iraqi Forces Breach Kurdistan Region Border: Official

The Iraqi army has moved its troops inside the territories under the jurisdiction of the Kurdistan Region, said a Kurdistan Democratic Party (KDP) representative in Garmiyan, south of Sulaymaniyah province.

The Iraqi forces have recently launched the fourth phase of “Operation Iraqi Heroes” to clean the rural areas of Diyala province from the remaining Islamic State (IS) militants. However, Akram Salih, the KDP representative, says the troops have taken no actions against IS since their deployment while they are pushing deeper into the areas under KRG’s jurisdiction based on the constitution.

According to Salih, the Peshmerga ministry of Kurdistan was not notified about the Iraqi army’s advances, and that the troops were moved into Kurdistan Region border in a suspicious coordination with the counter-terrorism forces affiliated with the Patriotic Union of Kurdistan (PUK).

“In many areas they have crossed the 36th line of latitude,” Salih added.

The 36th line of latitude is the border created following the 1991 Gulf War which the US, UK and France initiated to create a no-fly zone and protect the Kurds against the Baath regime.

Deputy Peshmerga Minister Sarbast Lazgin told VOA’s Kurdish service earlier today that the ministry of Peshmerga affairs, interior ministry, and Kurdistan Region’s security council were not informed on the issue by the Iraqi partners.