A Japanese freelance journalist covering the fighting in Iraq has been detained by Kurdish authorities.

Japanese government spokesman Yoshihide Suga said Tuesday in Tokyo that "we are aware that he is currently being detained" and that Japan is trying to determine why.

Japan's Kyodo News agency says that journalist Kosuke Tsuneoka (koh-soo-keh soo-neh-OH-ka) was reporting on the battle to recapture the city of Mosul from the Islamic State group.

Kyodo reported he is being held by the Kurdish militia known as the peshmerga.

Suga said that the Japanese Embassy in Iraq is requesting access to Tsuneoka. He added that "we are still confirming the details of his charges with local authorities."

Iraqi forces and their Kurdish allies, Sunni tribesmen and Shiite militias have been converging on Mosul since Oct. 17.