Iraqi Kurdish peshmerga forces on Wednesday left the key Syrian town of Kobane near the Turkish border after a half-year deployment to fight terrorists, a Turkish official told AFP.
The peshmerga, who had first deployed to Kobane in late October last year, successfully helped defeat Islamic State in Iraq and the Levant (ISIL) terrorists in the over two-month battle for the strategic town.
They crossed the border into Turkey and were then being flown back to northern Iraq, the official said. “Peshmerga forces left Turkey today (Wednesday) via air,” the official said, speaking on condition of anonymity.
Local media reported that a convoy of seven buses of Iraqi peshmerga escorted by Turkish security forces reached the southeastern Turkish city of Sanliurfa after travelling through the Mursitpinar border crossing.
The groups left for the Iraqi Kurdish capital of Arbil by plane. “The mission is over. No more peshmerga forces will arrive,” the Turkish official said.
In October, peshmerga fighters carrying heavy weaponry crossed the Turkish border to join the fight for the mainly-Kurdish Syrian town of Kobane against ISIL extremists.