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Iranian commander killed fighting with Shiite forces in northern Iraq

By Rudaw 27/5/2017
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Iranian commander killed fighting with Shiite forces in northern Iraq
Iraq's Shiite Hashd al-Shaabi forces storm the village of Adnaniyah north of Baaj. Photo: Iraqi PMU

ERBIL, Kurdistan Region - An Iranian military leader has been killed during an ongoing military assault against ISIS militants in Baaj, northern Iraq, a Shiite Hashd al-Shaabi official told Rudaw.


A Hashd al-Shaabi commander in Baaj confirmed to Rudaw that Gen. Shaban Nasiri, a high-ranking commander in the Islamic Revolutionary Guard Corps (IRGC), also known as Pasadran, was killed during clashes with ISIS in the area between Qairawan and Baaj on Friday night.


The Shiite commander hailed Nasri as playing a “major role” in planning the fights and that “he was present on the front lines himself many times.”


According to Iranian media, Nasr who had served in the army for 38 years and played an important role in creating the Badr Organization fighting the Baath regime in 1980s, had gained what they describe as lots of experience in the battles in Syria.


He had fought in the eight-year-long Iran-Iraq war in the 1980s. 


This news comes as Mohammed Ali Jaafari, the commander of the Pasdaran, had announced in November 2016 that no Iranian forces would take part in battles to liberate Mosul from ISIS. 

 

While the Iraqi armed forces have been engaged in tough clashes against ISIS inside Mosul, the Iranian backed-Hashd al-Shaabi have been charged with ridding ISIS from areas in west of Mosul in northern Iraq all the way to the Syrian border.


The second phase of a wide-scale operation named “Muhammed Rasululla” to take remaining areas from ISIS militants in northern Iraq is ongoing, with the Shiite force already fulfilling part of the military operation after it declared last week it had cleared the town of Qairawan and its surroundings of ISIS militants.


The operation aims to control the western Nineveh contested town of Baaj and eventually reach Syria’s border.
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