#MosulOps: Coalition denies bombing Iraqi Shia militia-held airport

#MosulOps: Coalition denies bombing Iraqi Shia militia-held airport
2 min read
26 November, 2016
Iraq's Popular Mobilisation Forces Shia militia umbrella have accused the US-led coalition of striking Tal Afar airport shortly after Prime Minister Haider al-Abadi held a meeting there with pro-Baghdad forces.
The PMU asked the coalition for an explanation after Tal Afar was attacked [Getty]
The Iraqi Shia paramilitary battling the Islamic State group in Mosul has accused the US-led coalition of bombing an airport it holds shortly after Prime Minister Haider al-Abadi held a meeting there with pro-Baghdad forces.

The Popular Mobilisation Forces - or Hashd al-Shaabi in Arabic - said in a statement that the exact location of the meeting was attacked on Thursday after Abadi left.

Tal Afar airport has been under militia control for more than a week.

"The location of our meeting was bombed and resulted in the injury of a number of our fighters," the group said in a statement.

"After inspecting the type of missile and its damage we found out that it was not the work of IS. It was a laser-guided missile and fired from a plane."

The militias has chosen Tal Afar, west of Mosul, as one of its major targets in the ongoing offensive against IS.

It comes amid threats from Turkey that it could use force to defend the Turkmen inhabitants of the town from the Shia militias.

The coalition has denied it was behind the attack.

"After a comprehensive review, time and location of the alleged incident does not correlate" with any coalition airstrike, Colonel John Dorrian, spokesman for the US-led coalition tweeted on Saturday.

Iraq's parliament has voted to grant full legal status to government-sanctioned Shia militias, effectively making the fighters reservists for the Iraqi army.

The law was passed despite protests from Sunni MPs