BAGHDAD, Oct. 22 (Xinhua) -- Three soldiers were killed on Sunday when an Iraqi army force clashed with a unit of Kurdish Peshmerga forces over control of military posts in the Makhmour area in northern Iraq.
The clash, which reportedly broke out in the afternoon and continued for about two hours, also wounded seven others from both sides.
Iraqi Prime Minister Mohammed Shia' al-Sudani has ordered an investigation into the incident, urging all military commanders, "whether from federal forces or Peshmerga forces," to exercise restraint, Yahia Rasoul, spokesman of the commander-in-chief of the Iraqi forces, said in a statement.
An army officer told Xinhua on condition of anonymity that the clash erupted over the control of three posts near Makhmour refugee camp, some 60 km southeast of the northern city of Mosul.
Both the army and the Kurdish units claimed their right over the control of the posts after the Kurdistan Workers' Party announced withdrawal from these posts three days ago, the officer added.
Makhmour area lies in the "disputed areas" claimed by Baghdad and the semi-autonomous region of Kurdistan. Disagreements between the two sides have long existed, as the ethnic Kurds consider the northern oil-rich province of Kirkuk and parts of Nineveh, Diyala, and Salahuddin provinces as disputed areas and want them to be incorporated into their region, a move fiercely opposed by the Iraqi government. ■