Kur­dish Pesh­merga tar­get Is­lamic State in Kirkuk

Kurds Re­veal Ev­i­dence of Chem­i­cal Weapons Use by Is­lamic State

The Kurdish Globe - - FRONT PAGE -

Ev­i­dence of Is­lamic State mil­i­tants’ use of chem­i­cal agents for mil­i­tary pur­poses against Kur­dish Pesh­merga forces has been ob­tained by BasNews.

The Kur­dis­tan Re­gion Se­cu­rity Coun­cil (KRSC) has pre­sented ev­i­dence that Is­lamic State (IS) has been us­ing chem­i­cal agents in the bat­tle­field against Pesh­merga forces.

Pesh­merga forces col­lected soil and cloth­ing sam­ples af­ter a ve­hi­cle- borne sui­cide attack (VBIED) on 23rd Jan­uary. The sam­ples were sent to be an­a­lysed by a coali­tion part­ner na­tion.

The anal­y­sis, which was car­ried out a EU cer­ti­fied lab­o­ra­tory, found the sam­ples con­tained lev­els of chlo­rine that sug­gested the sub­stance was used in weaponised form.

This is the first time in­ter­na­tional in­ves­ti­ga­tions have proved IS is util­is­ing chem­i­cal agents. The KRSC strongly de­plores all and any use of such in­dis­crim­i­nate weapons. The fact IS re­lies on such tac­tics demon­strates it has lost the ini­tia­tive and is re­sort­ing to des­per­ate mea­sures.

The 23rd Jan­uary attack took place on High­way 47 be­tween Mo­sul and Syria at the Kiske junc­tion as Pesh­merga forces were pre­par­ing de­fen­sive po­si­tions fol­low­ing a two-day of­fen­sive dur­ing which IS lost over 200 square kilo­me­tres of ter­ri­tory and over 200 fighters.

Around 20 gas can­is­ters were loaded on to the truck and primed to re­lease the gas upon ex­plo­sion.

Kur­dish au­thor­i­ties have long since sus­pected that IS fighters have been us­ing chem­i­cal agents.

In re­cent fight­ing around Tikrit, sim­i­lar at­tacks have been recorded on video show­ing plumes of or­ange smoke, an in­di­ca­tor of the pres­ence of chlo­rine. Again the weapon was used as they lost con­trol of the city. It ap­pears as if IS use the weaponised chlo­rine when they are suf­fer­ing heavy de­feats – th­ese two in­ci­dents are clear ex­am­ples of that and an in­di­ca­tion of the pres­sure that IS is un­der as it con­tin­ues to con­cede ter­ri­tory.

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