Iran’s Revolutionary Guard Brigadier General Hamid Taqavi has been killed Saturday near the town of Samara in Iraq, while fighting the Islamic State in Iraq. Reuters reported that General Taqavi was killed by Islamic State sniper fire which also wounded several people who were with him. A veteran of the eight-year Iran-Iraq War in the 1980s Taqavi was serving in an advisory role to the Iraqi Army defending Samarra. The town of Samarra is home to the Al Askari Shrine, one of the most important Shi’ite shrines.
Shi’ite Iran has recently increased its role in combating Islamic State militants by providing military advice and training to the Iraqi army. It has denied sending combat troops.
However, Iran confirmed sending unmanned aircraft to assist Iraqi forces fighting against ISIS. One of these drones was reportedly downed by ISIS today (Monday). The aircraft, reportedly a “Mojaher” type, was downed in al-Diyala province in eastern Iraq. Iran has lost several drones of this type over Iraq, some were captured by ISIS and Kurdish forces. Iran also suppled Yasir UAVs to the Harakat Hizballah al-Nujaba (HHN). The Yasir is a version of the Scan-Eagle Iran cloned from US drones captured in the persian Gulf.