ERBIL (Kurdistan 24) – The Democratic and Free Society of Eastern Kurdistan (KODAR) on Saturday confirmed that three fighters, including 2 KODAR leaders, were killed in clashes with Iranian government forces on Sep. 7.
The clashes took place a day before Tehran struck Iranian Kurdish (Rojhilati) opposition parties in the Iraqi Kurdish town of Koya, killing at least 15 and injuring 42 others on Sep. 8.
In what has been described as a coordinated attack, “Iran attacked [Rojhilati] parties in Koya,” while the Syrian regime hit Qamishlo, “agents of the Iranian Islamic Revolutionary Guard Corps (IRGC) launched an attack KODAR guerrillas in Sanandaj (Kurdistan Province),” the group said on Saturday.
“As a result of these attacks on KODAR, three guerrilla fighters were martyred,” KODAR noted.
Two of the slain fighters, Jamal Rahmani and Rauf Ibrahimi, were members of the KODAR leadership, as well as militiamen with the Kurdistan Free Life Party (PJAK), the armed wing of KODAR. The third fighter, Serif Amini, was a member of a youth group and a fourth fighter was reported missing.
“We will not allow the blood of martyrs to go in vain. We will continue their struggle,” KODAR said.
The IRGC-affiliated media, Tasnim, on Sep. 7, claimed to have “neutralized six PJAK members” in the clashes near Kamyaran. KODAR only confirmed the incident took place a week later.
PJAK, and its political wing, KODAR, are widely considered to be Rojhilati-branch of the Kurdistan Worker’s Party (PKK), which has been waging an insurgency against the Turkish government for broader Kurdish rights. The PKK is considered a terrorist organization by the US, NATO, the EU, and Turkey.
On Sep. 11, KODAR released a statement following Iran’s attack on both the Democratic Party of Iranian Kurdistan (PDKI) and the Kurdistan Democratic Party – Iran (KDP-I) and their headquarters on the outskirts of the Kurdistan Region’s town of Koya.
“The rapid steps the Islamic Republic of Iran takes in the Middle East show that Iran does not want a dialogue with any forces within or outside the country,” KODAR argued.
“The Islamic Republic of Iran has turned politics of dialogue into a policy of attack. Their policies throughout the Middle East, in Yemen, Lebanon, and Iraq, clearly demonstrate this.”
KODAR reiterated a point made by the PDKI and the KDP-I asserted the attacks were to “send a message to the US.”
“This supposedly ‘strongman’ does this to be seen as legitimate” by world powers, KODAR added.
It’s not the first time there are clashes between KODAR’s forces and Iran’s guards.
On July 20, PJAK claimed responsibility for the slayings of at least ten IRGC soldiers in the city of Marivan (Mariwan) in Iran’s Kurdistan Province.
The PJAK statement asserted it was “revenge” for the killing of four of its fighters in Mariwan and Paveh, as well as the assassination of Eghbal Moradi, the father and uncle of recently executed Kurdish political activists, Loghman and Zaniar Moradi.
Editing by Nadia Riva