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Iraq says anti-Iran groups disarmed, relocated from border

September 19, 2023 at 6:56 pm

A Kurdish peshmerga fighter affiliated with the Iranian Kurdistan Democratic Party (KDP-Iran) stands guard on a building following an Iranian cross-border attack in the town of Koye (Koysinjaq), 100Km east of Arbil, the capital of the autonomous Kurdish region of northern Iraq on October 1, 2022. [Photo by SAFIN HAMED/AFP via Getty Images]

The Iraqi government said, Tuesday, it had disarmed and relocated armed groups opposed to Iran from northern Iraq’s Kurdish region, Anadolu Agency reports.

In a statement, Iraq’s Higher Committee said the offices of the anti-Iran groups were evacuated and that they were disarmed and relocated to areas away from the border.

It said the move was taken in cooperation between the committee, the Iraqi government and the Kurdish Regional Government in Erbil.

According to the statement, members of the anti-Iran groups

will be considered refugees according to regulations of the United Nations High Commissioner for Refugees

Iraqi border forces were permanently deployed in the region, the statement said.

READ: Iran-Iraq ties on edge as deadline to disarm, relocate armed groups looms

The Committee called on all parties “to stay away from negative statements and to support joint efforts.”

Border security is a shared responsibility between the two countries

it added.

Last month, Iran announced an agreement with the Iraqi government on “disarming and relocating” the “armed terrorist groups” in northern Iraq’s Kurdish region by 19 September.

This January, Iran accused armed groups in northern Iraq of carrying out an attack on a military facility in the central city of Isfahan, which was reportedly thwarted.

The incident came less than two months after the IRGC fired missiles and drones at targets in the Kurdish region, killing at least 13 people.

Last month, Maj.-Gen. Mohammad Bagheri, Chief of Staff of the Iranian armed forces, warned that if the Iraqi authorities do not act, the Iranian military will resume its operations.

READ: Iran vows to use ‘deterrent military measures’ against Kurds