Iraqi border guards thwart attempted infiltration by militants from Syria

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Iraqi border guard forces thwarted a mass infiltration attempt by "foreign fighters" at Iraq's western border with Syria, the Iraqi Interior Ministry said Tuesday (February 21st).

"Iraqi forces guarding the border with Syria engaged late Monday evening with two armed terrorist groups who tried to enter Iraq via Wadi al-Mushayrafa and Sahl al-Hasan in Anbar province along the Syrian border," ministry spokesperson Maj. Gen. Adil Daham told Al-Shorfa.

Daham said the number of infiltrators was between 14-16 gunmen in the first group, and between 8-10 in the second group.

"Orders were given to use live ammunitions after the infiltrators refused to return to where they came from and after they opened heavy fire on the Iraqi security forces," he added.

"The two infiltration attempts failed because the two groups were forced to withdraw to Syria," he said. "Meanwhile, a number of light weapons left behind by gunmen were seized."

Daham said security has been beefed up at those areas in anticipation of new infiltration attempts.