Iran launched a cross-border air attack on Kurdish rebel positions in Iraq May 2—the first time Tehran has used aircraft against Kurdish guerillas. Kurdish border guards claim that Iranian helicopters began shelling three Kurdish villages—Kani Saif, Jomarasi and Kara Sozi—in the remote Panjwin district of Iraq’s autonomous Kurdistan region at 1:30 AM local time. The attacks continued for over an hour. The aircraft reportedly did not enter Iraq and there were no reports of casualties.
The attacks follow a series of clashes between guerrillas from the Party of Free Life of Kurdistan (PJAK), an ally of the Kurdistan Workers Party (PKK), which seeks a Kurdish homeland in southeast Turkey. Twenty-six were killed in a battle between Iranian security forces and PJAK militants on April 25 in western Iran. (The Media Line, May 3)