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Iraq Summons Iranian Ambassador After Drone Bombing Campaign

BAGHDAD (AP) — Iraq summoned the Iranian ambassador Thursday to file a diplomatic complaint following a deadly campaign of drone strikes, the Iraqi Foreign Ministry said in a statement.

Iranian drones attacked an Iranian-Kurdish opposition group in northern Iraq on Wednesday, killing at least nine people and wounding 32 others. The attacks took place as demonstrations continued to engulf the Islamic Republic after the death of Mahsa Amini, a 22-year-old Iranian Kurdish woman who died while in the custody of the Iranian morality police.

Iran’s strikes targeted Iranian Kurdistan Democratic Party positions in the city of Koya, about 65 kilometers (35 miles) east of Irbil, the main city and capital of the semi-autonomous Kurdish region of northern Iraq. The group, known by the acronym KDPI, is a leftist armed opposition force banned in Iran.

The Foreign Ministry said in its statement that civilians were among the dead. He added that the Iraqi government condemned “this crime, which represented the continuation of the Iranian forces’ intrusion into the sovereignty of Iraq.”

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The ministry also warned of the repercussions on “the social peace of both countries and on regional security and stability.”

Iran’s state-run IRNA news agency and broadcaster said Wednesday that the Islamic Republic’s Revolutionary Guards attacked a separatist group’s bases in northern Iraq with “precision missiles” and “suicide drones.”

Gen. Hasan Hasanzadeh of the Revolutionary Guards said 185 members of the Basij, a volunteer force, were injured with “machetes and knives” in the unrest in Iran. Hasanzadeh also said that protesters smashed the skull of a Basij member. He added that five Basij members were hospitalized in intensive care.

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United Nations agencies, the United States, Germany and the United Kingdom condemned the attacks in northern Iraq.

The UN mission in Iraq said in a tweet that the Middle Eastern country cannot be treated as “the ‘backyard’ of the region, where neighbors routinely violate their sovereignty with impunity.”

“Rocket diplomacy is a reckless act with devastating consequences,” the UN mission said.

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In Washington, US State Department deputy spokesman Vedant Patel confirmed to reporters that a US citizen was killed in the rocket attacks in Iraq’s Kurdish region. He offered no additional information, citing privacy concerns, and also reiterated the United States’ condemnation of Iran for the attacks.

Protests in Iran have sparked following Amini’s death in custody in Tehran and have spread to at least 46 cities, towns and villages across Iran. State television reported that at least 41 protesters and police officers have been killed since the demonstrations began on September 17. An Associated Press count of official statements by authorities put at least 14 dead, with more than 1,500 protesters arrested.

Meanwhile, Turkey’s defense minister said Turkish military planes carried out a new air offensive against suspected Turkish Kurdish separatist hideouts in northern Iraq, reaching as deep as 149 kilometers (87 miles) into Iraqi territory.

The planes attacked 16 caves, shelters and command centers allegedly used by Turkey’s outlawed Kurdistan Workers’ Party, or PKK, in the Asos region of northern Iraq on September 27, Hulusi Akar told reporters. journalists. He did not provide further details.

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The PKK maintains bases across the border in Iraq and has led an armed insurgency inside Turkey since 1984 in a conflict that has killed tens of thousands of people.

Over the years, Turkey’s military has launched numerous cross-border offensives into Iraq in search of PKK militants.

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