Al-Arabiya television crew covers preparations for Ba’shiqah battle

Iraqi special forces soldiers use radio communication as a tank rolls down an alley in the village of Bazwaya, some 8 kilometers from the center of Mosul, Iraq, Monday, Oct. 31 (Photo: AP/Marko Drobnjakovic)

Kurdish Peshmerga forces continue to besiege the Iraqi town of Ba’shiqah to liberate it from ISIS. Al-Arabiya television’s crew which is stationed on the front lines has observed the Kurdish forces’ preparations and the threats which these forces will be faced with during the raid which is expected in the upcoming days.

Ba’shiqah which is now entirely besieged from all sides has militarily fallen. According to a Peshmerga military commander, there are 150 ISIS members inside it.

Major-General Buhrom Arif Yassine who is in charge of the Peshmerga forces in west of Ba'shiqah said ISIS will prepare explosives and suicide bombers, plant explosions and fortify their posts, adding that this has slowed the Peshmerga's activity as they try to avoid losses. He noted that they want to expel and eliminate ISIS quickly without inflicting losses on his forces.

ISIS is trying to end the siege on it in this area and it has shelled Peshmerga forces and carried out attacks at night against them.

Peshmerga forces are thus stationed there while bulldozers are removing sand berms. While the television’s crew was at the southwestern front of Ba’shiqah, it met a German volunteer who has been fighting alongside the Peshmerga forces for two years now. His name is Seiko Zaewold.

“In 2014, when I saw what ISIS did to women, children, Yazidis and Kurds, I decided to come here and help the (Peshmerga). I’ve been here for two years. I train and advise the Peshmerga who deserve respect,” Zaewold said.

He also said that the Asayish - the Kurdish security organization - checked his civil record before they received him among their ranks, adding that there are hundreds of foreigners among the Peshmerga’s ranks and that he expects the Ba'shiqah battle to end during the next few days.

After liberating Ba’shiqah and Bazan from ISIS, Peshmerga will have ended its mission in Mosul and it will only have to protect the areas which it liberated from the ISIS front lines.

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Last Update: Wednesday, 20 May 2020 KSA 09:52 - GMT 06:52
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