(Photo Credit: AP)
On 19 December, extremist armed group ISIS claimed responsibility for a terror attack that killed nine police officers in Iraq a day prior.
The militant group disclosed on a Telegram channel that they were responsible for detonating an explosive and proceeded to fire against the security forces with automatic rifles and hand grenades.
The explosion was set off next to a police convoy in Iraq’s Kirkuk province in the Riyadh district.
Iraqi Major General Yehia Rasool reported that one of the culprits was killed in combat, another was wounded, and the third evaded the attack scene.
Rasool claimed that several of his colleagues were killed in the attack.
The Governor of the Kirkuk province, Rakan Al Jubouri, called for an emergency meeting with the Council of Ministers for National Security to discuss the ongoing investigation into the attack.
He ordered military units to be deployed to empty locales to retain order in disrupted regions in northern Iraq to prevent further attacks from ISIS.
Northern Iraq is dominated by a Kurdish population and harbors several Kurdish separatist groups. One of these groups is the western-backed Democratic Party of Iranian Kurdistan (KDPI), which has funneled weapons into Iran and prolonged the nation’s current insecurity during a period of nationwide riots.
Kurdish militants in Iraq and Syria have engaged in combat against ISIS for years, despite being responsible for disruptions regarding their alleged attacks against Turkiye and their facilitation of looted oil to US forces in Syria.
On 13 December, the Kurdish militant branch known as the Syrian Democratic Forces (SDF) arrested the emir of ISIS in northern Syria in a joint operation with the US occupation forces.
The operation was launched to dismantle a ploy by ISIS to supply weapons to its affiliates and targeted the prisons in the al-Hawl camp.
Turkiye’s Claw-Sword operation had recently halted all anti-ISIS operations by the SDF and its western allies, given that Ankara held Kurdistan Workers Party (PKK) responsible for the Istanbul bombing last month.
Ankara’s forces have been illegally occupying Syria since 2016 to establish a buffer zone between Turkiye’s border and Kurdish separatist groups operating from Syria. The Syrian government has referred to Ankara’s cross-border operations as a “colonialist” scheme against the people of Syria.