Kurdistan's Peshmerga forces bar Iraqi
army from Syria border area
July 27, 2012
Jabbar Yawar, spokesman for the Iraqi Kurdish
peshmerga security forces.
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Kurdish peshmerga forces
ERBIL-Hewlêr, Kurdistan region 'Iraq', —
Iraqi Kurdish security forces have prevented
soldiers sent by Baghdad from reaching a disputed
north Iraq area that borders Syria, a top Kurdish
security official said on Friday.
Soldiers from the 10th Iraqi army division on
Wednesday "tried to go from the Rabiyah area to the
Zimar area, and the 8th Brigade of the (Kurdish)
peshmerga prevented them," Jabbar Yawar, a top
official in the Kurdish ministry responsible for the
local peshmerga security forces, told AFP.
Yawar said that the Iraqi army division had been
sent to protect the Iraqi-Syrian border.
The Fishkhabur crossing with Syria is located in
Zimar, which has been controlled by the peshmerga
since 1992, but its long-term ownership is disputed
between the autonomous Kurdistan region and Baghdad.
Rabiyah is in Nineveh province which borders parts
Asked why the soldiers sent by Baghdad were
prevented from reaching the area, Yawar said that
"their coming was not coordinated, and these are
He noted that there are both peshmerga and border
police in the area, and said that additional forces
were not needed as it is secure.
Relations between the federal government in Baghdad
and Kurdish authorities in Erbil are at a low ebb
over multiple festering disputes,www.ekurd.net
and Kurdish president Massoud Barzani has supported
efforts to pass a no-confidence motion against Iraqi
Prime Minister Nuri al-Maliki.
Mosul, capital city of Ninewa province in Iraq, near
the border with Kurdistan region, lies 405 km north
of Baghdad. The Yazidis are primarily ethnic Kurds located near Mosul.
A Kurdish Yazidis are primarily ethnic Kurds located
near Mosul. Some 350,000 Yazidis live
in villages around Mosul near Kurdistan autonomous region border.
Kurdish Yazidis look to Kurdistan region, the
Kurdish Yazidis are concentrated in key areas for
the referendum, including lands coveted by the Kurds
north of Mosul and around Sinjar on the Syrian
border. The Kurds see the referendum as a chance to
right Saddam Hussein's historic wrongs of forced
population transfer and Arabization. The Arabs see
it as a Kurdish land grab.
Article 140 of the Iraqi constitution states that
there will be a referendum in the areas bordering the Kurdistan autonomous
region, including the northern oil city of Kirkuk, so that people can choose
whether to be ruled by the central government or the Kurds.
The Yazidis are a dominant group in the northwest
region, a historically oppressed people who speak Kurdish and are ethnically
Kurd but follow their own religion. In fact, they are reputed to be devil
worshippers, not just by Iraqi Muslims but they’ve been characterized that way
by Western scholars over the years.
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