Iraqi forces, Peshmerga on patrol after Erbil airport attack

Iraqi forces, Kurdish Peshmerga on night patrol after Erbil airport attack
1 min read
14 September, 2021
Iraqi and Iraqi Kurdish forces are working together in the disputed territories to find militants responsible for attacks, including one on Erbil airport last weekend.
Iraq's disputed territories see little cooperation between forces [Getty]

Iraqi and Iraqi Kurdish forces are on night patrol in the country's disputed territories after a drone attack on Erbil airport last weekend, security officials have said.

Two explosives-laden drones were used to attack the airport, which is home to an airbase for the US-led international coalition.

Saturday night's attack prompted lawmakers to call for increased cooperation between Baghdad and Erbil.

A joint patrol operated all day, but their activities increase at night, one military official told The New Arab's Arabic language sister site Al-Araby Al-Jadeed.

Ayoub Al-Rubaie, a member of the Iraqi parliament's security committee, said: "A joint intelligence room was formed between Baghdad and Erbil, represented by the army and the Peshmerga, to track down wanted persons and dismantle the sleeper cells of extremist groups."

This was formed "in light of the current security challenges in Iraq", Al-Rubaie said.

Control of parts of northern and western Iraq are disputed between the federal Iraqi government and Iraqi Kurdistan authority.

The dispute has meant a lack of security coordination in these areas. 

The Islamic State group and Iran-backed militias have been able to conduct attacks from these disputed territories.

Both groups use the area to fire at foreign diplomatic and military targets, including the airbase at Erbil's airport.