Last updated: 29 July, 2011

Kurd rebels kill Basij militiaman

Kurdish rebels have killed a member of Iran’s Basij militia after attacking a rural base in the western province of Kurdistan, Mehr news agency reported on Friday.

Mehr, quoting a local governor, said rebels of the Party of Free Life of Kurdistan (PJAK) targeted the Basij base of Selin, near the town of Sarv-Abad, on Wednesday night.

“The terrorists attacked the base … killing one Basij member and injuring four others,” Sarv-Abad governor Ahmad Mohammad-Rezaei told the agency. He said PJAK rebels also “suffered heavy losses” but did not give details.

The agency said the rebels had killed another Basij member as well as a police officer in the town over the past two weeks.

On July 16, Iranian troops launched a major offensive against PJAK compounds, with the elite Revolutionary Guards claiming to have killed more than 50 rebels in the ongoing fighting.

At least eight Guards have been killed, including a senior officer, in clashes on the border with Iraq, where PJAK rebels operate out of bases in its autonomous Kurdish region.

A 10-year-old Iraqi Kurd was killed late Thursday evening by Iranian forces, who regularly shell border districts of the Kurdish region of northern Iraq targeting PJAK bases.

On Wednesday, Iraqi Foreign Minister Hoshyar Zebari called for Iran to stop shelling positions of Kurdish rebels inside Iraq, warning it was damaging ties between Baghdad and Tehran.

But Iranian media reported the same day that Tehran would keep up its operations until Iraq deployed security forces along the border to prevent cross-border attacks by PJAK rebels.