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Iraq: Explosions heard as Iraqi forces enter Kurdish-held Kirkuk01:03

Iraq: Explosions heard as Iraqi forces enter Kurdish-held Kirkuk

Iraq, Kirkuk
October 16, 2017 at 01:02 GMT +00:00 · Published

Explosions and fighting can be heard in the background as Iraq forces launched a “major operation” in the Kurdish-held city of Kirkuk on Sunday.

Locals gathered in centre of the city after Iraqi Prime Minister Haider al-Abadi ordered his forces to advance on the city shortly after midnight.

Tensions between the two sides have been brewing since Iraqi Kurds overwhelmingly voted for secession in a September 25 referendum that Baghdad rejected as illegal.

Kurdish Peshmerga forces took control of oil-rich Kirkuk after the Iraqi army fled a major offensive by the Islamic State in 2014.

Iraq: Explosions heard as Iraqi forces enter Kurdish-held Kirkuk01:03
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Explosions and fighting can be heard in the background as Iraq forces launched a “major operation” in the Kurdish-held city of Kirkuk on Sunday.

Locals gathered in centre of the city after Iraqi Prime Minister Haider al-Abadi ordered his forces to advance on the city shortly after midnight.

Tensions between the two sides have been brewing since Iraqi Kurds overwhelmingly voted for secession in a September 25 referendum that Baghdad rejected as illegal.

Kurdish Peshmerga forces took control of oil-rich Kirkuk after the Iraqi army fled a major offensive by the Islamic State in 2014.

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