KRI: Fatalities in helicopter crash SDF fighters

KRI: Fatalities in helicopter crash SDF fighters
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SDF has confirmed that it was nine of their fighters that died in the helicopter crash in the Kurdistan Region of Iraq two days ago.

Kurdish-led Syrian Democratic Forces (SDF) said in a media communication on Friday that the two helicopters that crashed on Wednesday in the Kurdistan Region of Iraq (KRI) were carrying SDF fighters.

"A group of our SDF counter-terrorism Units (YAT) were headed to the south of the Kurdistan Region of Iraq to exchange security and military expertise that would help enhance the units' combat and security capacity in their ongoing tasks," the communication said.

"While the two helicopters carrying our group of fighters were on their way to al-Sulaymaniyah city on the evening of March 15, 2023, they crashed due to bad weather conditions, leading to the martyrdom of nine of our fighters, including the commander of the YAT forces Shervan Kobani."

It added:

"These units are critical partners of the international coalition in the fight against ISIS [the Islamic State] and are trained in advanced fighting methods. Moreover, they are actively working to develop their combat capabilities and strengthen the mechanisms of joint action with the involved partners to fight ISIS in the region."

The top commander of SDF Mazloum Abdi posted the pictures of the nine fighters and said:

"Our Special Anti-Terrorism Forces (YAT) lost nine fighters, including the unit commander Shervan Kobani, while they were heading to the Kurdistan Region as part of a joint action program against ISIS. Their sacrifices will inspire us in protecting our people's freedom. Our condolences for the families of the martyrs and our people."

Farhad Shami, head of SDF media center, said in a tweet that the identities of the fatalities will be announced.

SDF did not provide information on who the helicopters belonged to.

SDF is the ally of the US led global coalition and constitutes the ground force in combating the Islamic State (ISIS) in northeast Syria.