The achievement by PMF, also known as Hasd al-Shaabi, came after the volunteer forces along with the country's army have liberated the oil-rich city of Kirkuk and Tuz Khurmatu town from Peshmerga militias on Monday.
Tensions between Iraq's central government and Kurdistan Regional Government (KRG) escalated after 25 September, when the semiautonomous Kurdistan region held a credendum on independence from Iraq.
The controversial vote was faced with wide regional and international oppositions; however, KRG has so far defied renouncing the breakaway move.
Iraqi government, in a punitive measure, ordered the country's armed forces on Monday to launch large-scale operations from several fronts on disputed areas that were under Peshmerga's control.
Disputed regions label covers some parts of Kirkuk, Diyala, Nineveh and Saladin provinces on which the Iraqi government and Kurds struggle for control and demographic structure determination. Taking advantage of vacuum of power created by ISIS incursion into the Arab country, Kurdish militias seized control of many parts of these disputed areas.
Iraqi Prime Minister Haider al-Abadi issued a statement on Monday, saying that he is fulfilling his constitutional duty that entails serving the people and “the protection of the unity of the country that has faced the threat of division due to the insistence of [the Kurdish leadership] on holding the referendum, in a unilateral manner, while the Iraqi government faced the threat of ISIS".
Iraq's Kurdish Regional Government (KRG) held an illegitimate independence referendum on Sept. 25. The breakaway vote has faced strong opposition from most regional and international actors -- including the Iran, Turkey, and the US, who warned that the poll would distract from Iraq’s fight against terrorism and further destabilize the region.
Iraqi Prime Minister's statement also rebuked Kurdistan referendum as a bid to "establish a race based state.” Premier said KRG nonetheless went ahead with the vote by “violating the constitution,” despite calls by the international community that demanded Erbil to reconsider it.
He said he reassures the people of Kurdistan “in particular Kirkuk” that they will protect their lives, their interests, and that “we did not do anything beyond our constitutional duties to prevail the federal authority, the protection of the national wealth in that city that we want it to stay as a peaceful coexisting city.”
It said that the Iraqi forces will protect the rule of law, while asking the Kurdish Peshmerga, as part of the Iraqi defense system to “carry on its duties under the federal leadership.”
The statement concluded by calling on the people to go back to their “normal lives” and for the state employees, including the police and security forces to commit to their duties in the city