ERBIL (Kurdistan 24) – Three members of the Iraqi federal police were killed and a fourth was wounded after unknown gunmen launched a surprise attack on a security checkpoint northwest of Kirkuk late on Monday, security sources said.
The incident took place near the village of Klor, which is part of Kirkuk Province’s Pirde (Altun Kupri) subdistrict, the center of which is a town of the same name that lies on the strategic road connecting the Kirkuk and Erbil provinces.
This marks the latest such attack in the province since Iraqi forces took control of the subdistrict after the Peshmerga were forced to withdraw in October 2017.
The Iraqi security communications center, Security Media Cell, described the incident as a “terrorist attack” and reported in a statement the casualties the police had sustained: three deaths and an injury.
The statement gave no further details of the nature of the attack.
Security sources said the checkpoint, where the police were stationed, was attacked by gunmen riding in sports cars.
A‘aqil Kan’ani, a spokesman for the Joint Operations Command Center of Kirkuk, told Kurdistan 24 the victims belonged to the 61st brigade of the federal police.
Klor is located only a few kilometers from territory that was once controlled by the Islamic State, which continues to carry out sporadic insurgency-style attacks, especially in areas it once controlled, over a year after the collapse of their so-called caliphate in Iraq.
Although the terrorist organization is yet to claim responsibility for the attack, security sources said that the attack bears the hallmarks of tactics used by “sleeper cell.”
Editing by Nadia Riva