Iranian militia kill five rebels near border
Five rebels and three members of the hardline basij militia were killed in clashes in western Iran near the border with Turkey and Iraq, a press report said on Wednesday, AFP reported.
"Five rebels and three basijis were killed in the latest clashes between armed rebels and basij forces in border areas of West Azerbaijan province," the hardline Kayhan newspaper said.
Kayhan did not say when the clashes took place nor did it elaborate on the identity of the rebels.
Western Iran, which has a sizeable Kurdish population, has seen deadly clashes between Iranian security forces and members of the Kurdish rebel Party of Free Life of Kurdistan (PJAK).
Members of PJAK are have reportedly been operating out of rear-bases in neighbouring Iraq in recent years.
Eighteen policemen and eight PJAK rebels were killed in a fierce gunbattle on April 24 in a attack on a police station close to the Iraqi border in Kermanshah province.
PJAK is closely allied with the Turkish Kurdish rebel group, the Kurdistan Workers' Party (PKK).
Iraq, Iran, Syria and Turkey all have significant ethnic Kurdish minorities.