BEIRUT

Middle East

Kurds plan counter-offensive against ISIS

A Kurdish Peshmerga fighter stands on his position behind dirt barriers built along the front line with militants from the Al-Qaeda-inspired Islamic State of Iraq and Greater Syria (ISIS), in Mariam Bek village, between the northern cities of Tikrit and Kirkuk June 30, 2014. (AP Photo/Hussein Malla)

BAGHDAD: Kurdish peshmerga forces are planning a counter-offensive against Islamic State of Iraq and Greater Syria (ISIS) fighters in northern Iraq after being routed by the radical Sunni insurgents Sunday, senior Kurdish officials said Monday.

One of the officials told Reuters the Kurds had been overstretched in a vast region but were now calling in a large number of fighters to hit back. "It is a very dangerous situation for the region. Something needs to be done soon."

ISIS inflicted its first major defeat on the Kurds with a dramatic advance through three towns to reach the Mosul Dam, acquiring a fifth oil field to fund its operations along the way.

State television and witnesses said Sunday that theISIS had seized Iraq's biggest dam. Kurdish peshmerga officials said they have pushed ISIS militants from the Dam area. This could not be immediately confirmed.

One peshmerga colonel who said the Kurdish withdrawal was tactical forecast that several Kurdish brigades would take back all territory lost on Sunday and even win back Mosul, Iraq's biggest northern city.

"We will attack them until they are completely destroyed we will never show any mercy," he said. "We have given them enough chance and we will even take Mosul back. I believe within the next 48-72 hours it will be over."

 

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Summary

Kurdish peshmerga forces are planning a counter-offensive against Islamic State of Iraq and Greater Syria (ISIS) fighters in northern Iraq after being routed by the radical Sunni insurgents Sunday, senior Kurdish officials said Monday.

Kurdish peshmerga officials said they have pushed ISIS militants from the Dam area.

One peshmerga colonel who said the Kurdish withdrawal was tactical forecast that several Kurdish brigades would take back all territory lost on Sunday and even win back Mosul, Iraq's biggest northern city.


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