Peshmerga, Hashid al-Shaabi begin withdrawal of forces from Tuz Khurmatu

Peshmerga, Hashid al-Shaabi begin withdrawal of forces from Tuz Khurmatu
5 years ago

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TUZ KHURMATU — Peshmerga and Hashid al-Shaabi (Popular Mobilization) began the withdrawal of forces from Tuz Khurmatu on Thursday (April 28) after an agreement was reached by both sides the previous day.

Mohammed Fayaq, the head of media for the Tuz Khurmatu municipality, told NRT, “Peshmerga have abided by the agreement and began withdrawing forces early in the morning based on the agreement between leaders of Peshmerga and Hashid al-Shaabi.

Fayaq said Peshmerga are continuing to withdraw forces from the town.

Ali Hashm, a Hashid al-Shaabi spokesman in Tuz Khurmatu, said, “Hashid al-Shaabi will fully abide by the agreement and punish anyone who violates it.”

Hashm condemned the disputes which erupted between Peshmerga and the Shia paramilitaries during the last few days in Tuz Khurmatu and urged both sides to prevent hostility among ethnic groups in the town.

Leaders of Peshmerga forces and Hashid al-Shaaabi reached an agreement on Wednesday (April 27) to withdraw their forces from Tuz Khurmatu in an attempt to end clashes in the town.

NRT correspondent Diyar Jamal said delegations from Kurdish forces and Hashid al-Shaabi met in Tuz Khurmatu on Wednesday to negotiate a deal to bring a stop to the violent clashes.

According to the agreement, members of Peshmerga and Hashid al-Shaabi must withdraw from Tuz Khurmatu. The agreement also provides compensation for those who suffered injury or damage to property during the fighting.

Clashes between Kurdish forces and Hashid al-Shaabi were supposed to have come to an end on Tuesday (April 26) but residents in Tuz Khurmatu reported the occasional sound of gunfire.

Fighting erupted on April 23 at 10:30 pm local time after paramilitary forces threw a grenade into the house of a Peshmerga commander in the town.

Clashes have claimed the lives of at least ten Peshmerga and civilians over several days of fighting.

Tuz Khurmatu, located 180 km north of Baghdad, lies in an area of disputed territory between the Kurdish-administered north and southern regions under the central government, with an ethnically diverse population of Turkmen, Kurds and Arabs.