Published On: Mon, Jan 9th, 2017

Prominent Kurds Blast Turkey and Northern Iraq’s Barzani Regime for Having Kurds Fight Kurds

 nsnbc : The prominent Iraqi Kurdish politician Dr. Mahmoud Osman as well as Turkey’s Communities Union in Kurdistan, the political wing of Turkey’s outlawed Kurdistan Worker’s Party (PKK) criticized the Turkish government and the Kurdistan Democratic Party (KDP) administration led by Massoud Barzani, for using Kurds to fight Kurds. The response came after Barzani and Turkey’s Foreign Minister Binali Yildirim, yesterday, agreed to join forces in “fighting terrorism”, including the PKK.

dr-mahmoud-othman_iraq_kurds_2017Dr. Othman strongly condemned the fact that the government of Iraq’s Kurdistan Autonomous Region (KAR), dominated by the Kurdistan Democratic party (KDP), designated the PKK as a terrorist organization.

Dr. Othman added that the PKK is defending itself and it is better for Turkey to resume peace talks and liberate the jailed leader of the PKK, Abdullah Ocalan. In 2015 Turkey’s AKP government unilaterally ended peace talks and a ceasefire between the State and the PKK and resumed military operations against the PKK in both Turkey and Syria.

On Sunday Barzani and Yildirim held a joint press conference in Erbil and announced that Turkey and Iraq’s Kurdistan Autonomous Region would boost cooperation in a number of sectors including anti-terrorism cooperation.

The announcement came one day after Turkey agreed with Baghdad to withdraw Turkish troops that had been stationed in Iraq in violation of Iraqi sovereignty and international law since December 2015.

The political wing of the Kurdistan Worker’s Party PKK, the Communities in Kurdistan (KCK), accused the Turkish government on Monday of provoking tensions between Baghdad and the Kurdistan Region, saying the group’s presence in Sinjar “is not Turkey’s issue.”

sarhad-varto_kurdistan-communities-union_kck_2016_turkeyKCK spokesman Sarhad Varto said that KCK / PKK fighters have always been ready to respond to any attack by Turkey or any other group in Sinjar.  He added:

“The lingering of the Kurdistan Workers’ Party (PKK) in Sinjar is not by any means related to Turkey, rather it is an internal matter and related to Iraq’s sovereignty. .. PKK officials are in negotiation with Erbil, Baghdad and the international coalition over how to govern Sinjar and the withdrawal of the PKK, and we believe Sinjar must be governed by its people – a process which is up to Peshmerga, guerrillas, Iraqi army and coalition to monitor.”

Varto also noted that Turkish troops currently deployed in Bashiqa in northern Iraq should pull out of Iraq immediately. He also stressed that the KCK did want to get into an internal dispute with their Kurdish “brothers” for putting up with the Turkish presence. “We don’t want to be involved in a fight between brothers,” he added.

CH/L – nsnbc 09.01.2016

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