The East Kurdistan Defense Forces (YRK) published photographs of 12 of its fighters killed in Iran on October 4. Photo: PJAK
ERBIL, Kurdistan Region—Iran may have used “chemical weapons” against 12 Kurdish guerrilla fighters killed on October 4 in clashes between Iranian security forces and the East Kurdistan Defence Forces (YRK) in western Iran, the group claimed on Tuesday adding that they will seek revenge for the deaths.
“The enemy with the intensive use of its air and ground forces attacked our comrades. There is a suspicion that chemical weapons may have been used. Also, according to the information we have obtained, there is a possibility that our comrades had been poisoned by mercenaries. That is why the Iranian forces were able to easily conduct an assault against our comrades and martyr 12 of our comrades,” reads a statement published on the website of the Party for Free Life in Kurdistan (PJAK), the political wing of the YRK.
The YRK also published the names and photographs of all 12 fighters, men ranging in age from 19 to 34.
The clash happened near Salasbajani town in Kermanshah, in western Iran.
The leadership council for PJAK said this incident, yet again proved that Iran had breached the terms of the ceasefire between the two sides.
PJAK called for limited “revenge attacks” within the scope of “defence and self-defence,” falling short of renewing an armed campaign against Iran.
The YRK had confirmed the clash last week, saying it would release detailed information at a later date.
The group said the clash occurred as a result of “a conspiracy” between Iranian forces and “affiliated gang groups.”
The Iranian Revolutionary Guards Corp (IRGC) reported last Tuesday that they had killed 12 militants of a “terrorist” group near the Iraqi border, in the same area mentioned by the YRK.
“The group of 12 militants were all killed and a significant amount of weapons and ammunition were seized from the terrorists,” the Iranian semi-official Tasnim news agency quoted Commander of the IRGC Ground Force Brigadier General Mohammad Pakpour as saying.
Pakpour added that the clashes began at noon on Tuesday and lasted for hours in the town of Salasbajani in the Kermanshah province near the Iraqi border.
Pakpour also revealed that three Iranian soldiers were wounded in the confrontation.
He claimed that “the armed group…had plans to sneak into Iranian territory to cause insecurity.”
The IRGC commander described the group as “affiliated with the anti-revolutionary and terrorist groups that receive support from the US and the Zionist regime of Israel.”