The LAT reports that Iraqi soldiers at a base near Mosul shot and killed two US troops on Saturday and wounded a third. The US soldiers returned fire, killing one of the Iraqis. The LAT says there are increasing fears that Sunni insurgents have infiltrated the security forces.
Iranian helicopter gunships attacked villages in Iraqi Kurdistan near the Iranian border on Saturday. The Iranian counter-attack came after the April 21 incursion of the PJAK terrorist organization (a branch of the PKK or Kurdish Workers Party that focuses on the Kurds of Iran) into Iran. An ensuing gun battle left 18 Iranian policemen daed along with 8 Kurdish fighters. There are about 1.5 million Iranian Kurds, and some want independence from Iran.
Muqtada al-Sadr showed up in Turkey for consultations with high government officials on Saturday. Since al-Sadr is a strong Iraqi nationalist who rejects Kurdish aspirations for semi-auonomy from Baghdad, it is not impossible that Kurdistan was a big item on his agenda.
Aljazeera English reports on the Kurdish demand that the Iraqi federal government pay for the Peshmerga military of the Kurdistan Regional Government (KRG). Baghdad complains that the Peshmerga forces are too large, and also that they have inserted themselves into areas in Iraq proper, well beyond the border with the KRG.
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