At least 10 members of Iran’s Revolutionary Guards (IRGC) were killed in early morning clashes within an unknown armed group in Mariwan. File photo: AFP
ERBIL, Kurdistan Region – At least 10 Iranian Revolutionary Guards were killed in early morning clashes in Mariwan, Kurdistan province on Saturday in an attack claimed by the Kurdistan Free Life Party (PJAK).
PJAK said it launched the attack in retaliation for the killing of its forces and the assassination of one of its members in the Sulaimani province of the Kurdistan Region.
“We confirmed responsibility for the clash in Mariwan. The clash was in retaliation for our latest martyrs and the assassination of one of our members in Penjwen,” Amed Shaho, a PJAK spokesman, told Rudaw.
On July 17, the body of Iqbal Muradi, a political activist and a member of PJAK, was found near the village of Aliyawa in Penjwen, Sulaimani province.
“Later we will release more details about this clash. The Iranian Revolutionary Guards suffered more casualties than Iranian officials announced. We suffered no casualties,” Shaho added. “We will not launch more attacks if the IRGC do not attack our forces and members.”
PJAK is one of several armed Kurdish groups active along the Kurdistan Region-Iran border. The party has ties with the Kurdistan Workers’ Party (PKK).
Iran’s IRNA news agency reported that 11 were killed and eight wounded in Saturday morning’s attack. Other media put the death toll at 10.
An ammunition cache exploded in the clashes, causing a number of casualties, Fars News reported, citing an official statement.
Iranian forces reported they had killed a number of the attackers, but there no definite casualty figures have been confirmed.
The mayor of Mariwan, Mohammed Shafi, claimed the attack was staged by PJAK.
Updated at 9:38 pm