Canada Loses First Soldier in Fight Against ISIL From Allies' Hands

© REUTERS / DND/HandoutSergeant Andrew Joseph Doiron, member of the Canadian Special Operations Regiment based at Garrison Petawawa, Ontario, Canada, is pictured in this undated handout photo provided by Department of National Defence, DND.
Sergeant Andrew Joseph Doiron, member of the Canadian Special Operations Regiment based at Garrison Petawawa, Ontario, Canada, is pictured in this undated handout photo provided by Department of National Defence, DND. - Sputnik International
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The Canadian military lost its first soldier in the fight against the self-proclaimed Islamic State (IS). However, the death was not a result of a terrorist attack, but a friendly fire incident, which now strains relations between the US-led anti-IS coalition and the Peshmerga Kurdish forces.

Kurdish officials claimed Sunday that Sgt. Andrew Joseph Doiron and three fellow soldiers, who were wounded in the attack, showed up to the front line unannounced to call in airstrikes.

"They went to the frontline to direct airstrikes because the area was attacked by ISIS the day before," Hezhar Ismail, director of coordination and relations for the Peshmerga, the Kurdish fighters.

© AP Photo / Hussein MallaA Kurdish Peshmerga fighter carries his weapon walks onto his base, where two flags of the Islamic State in Iraq and the Levant (ISIL) are seen on a building, right, and water tower, left, at the front line with the al-Qaida-inspired militants in Tuz Khormato, 100 kilometers (62 miles) south of the oil rich province of Kirkuk, northern Iraq.
A Kurdish Peshmerga fighter carries his weapon walks onto his base, where two flags of the Islamic State in Iraq and the Levant (ISIL) are seen on a building, right, and water tower, left, at the front line with the al-Qaida-inspired militants in Tuz Khormato, 100 kilometers (62 miles) south of the oil rich province of Kirkuk, northern Iraq.  - Sputnik International
A Kurdish Peshmerga fighter carries his weapon walks onto his base, where two flags of the Islamic State in Iraq and the Levant (ISIL) are seen on a building, right, and water tower, left, at the front line with the al-Qaida-inspired militants in Tuz Khormato, 100 kilometers (62 miles) south of the oil rich province of Kirkuk, northern Iraq.

Canadian officials, however, denied such allegations, saying the soldiers had passed several Kurdish checkpoints with no problems and were well behind the frontlines when shot by a nervous Kurdish fighter.

The Canadians were less than 100 meters from the post when they were cut down by the friendly fire, according to a military source.

“The notion that we somehow ‘surprised’ them by being there is not accurate,” the source said.

Iraqi Kurdish peshmerga fighters - Sputnik International
UK Defence Ministry Remains Silent Over Soldier Caught Fighting ISIL

“They had been there earlier in the day, and they were returning to the observation post… when it was dark out, and apparently it was a case of mistaken identity,” Canada’s Defence Minister Jason Kenney told Canada TV on Sunday.

Peshmerga spokesman Halgurd Hekmat also confirmed that the Canadian group showed up unannounced Friday in the village of Bashiq in Iraq’s Nineveh province near the militant-held city of Mosul, which witnessed heavy fighting against IS militants the previous day.


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