AFP: Iranian forces bombarded northern Iraq’s rugged Bashdar region on Thursday targeting Kurdish guerrillas, local officials told AFP. SULAIMANIYAH, Iraq, July 12, 2007 (AFP) – Iranian forces bombarded northern Iraq’s rugged Bashdar region on Thursday targeting Kurdish guerrillas, local officials told AFP.
“There was fighting between PJAK and Iranian forces and there was steady bombardment by Iranians in the Sardul area in Bashdar region,” Bashir Ahmed, district administrator of Bashdar, on the Iranian border.
The Party of Free Life in Kurdistan (PJAK) is an anti-Iranian offshoot of Kurdistan Workers’ Party (PKK), a Kurdish separatist movement fighting to carve out an independent state in southeastern Turkey.
Both groups have rear bases in the mountains of northern Iraq, which Iran frequently shells.
Jabbar Yawar, a spokesman for Iraqi Kurdish “peshmerga” security forces, also confirmed the Iranian action in Bashdar region.
“It is true. But we do not support the PKK or PJK. We oppose using Kurdish land to hit any country and also demand that our regions should not be hit,” Yawar said.
The PKK has fought for decades for the autonomy of the Kurdish people, and Turkey has recently warned it could take military action against the rebels if their activities are not reined in by Iraq or the United States.