Iraqi Army commanders negotiated a deal with ISIS in Hawija south of the Kirkuk provincial capital instead of combating ISIS in the area, Israeli military intelligence website DEBKAfile reported on Tuesday citing own military sources.
According to DEBKAfile, the deal was allegedly reached through the mediation of local Arab tribes.
“They granted safe passage for the occupiers [ISIS members] and their families to withdraw from Hawija, in return for a commitment not to resist the Iraqi army’s takeover of the town. Iraqi troops indeed secured a corridor for their exit, after which the Islamic fighters headed for Diyala in eastern Iraq near the Iranian border,” the website’s report argued.
Spokesman for the Iraqi Joint Operations Command Yahia Rasoul officially denied these claims and called the allegations “very funny”.
“Iraqi troops had not, and will never, strike a deal with Daesh (IS), neither in Hawija nor anywhere else,” he said. “There had been a ferocious fighting, hundreds of IS were killed, and hundreds of explosive devices were defused…what deal are you talking about?”