Turkey hopes Baghdad-Arbil deal will eradicate ISIL, PKK in Sinjar
Turkey expressed hope that a deal between the Iraqi central government and regional government in Arbil for cooperation in the field of security and administrative issues will yield the eradication of ISIL and the PKK in the Sinjar region.
“We hope this agreement is carried out in a way that would enable the reinstatement of the control of the Iraqi authorities in Sinjar, the eradication of DAESH and PKK terrorist organizations and their extensions in the region and ensure the safe return to their ancestral lands of Yazidis and the other people of the region who have been subject to grave oppression and persecution of first DAESH and then of the PKK,” read a written statement issued by the Foreign Ministry over the weekend, using another acronym for ISIL.
The ministry recalled that the Iraqi central government and the Kurdistan Regional Government (KRG) announced that an agreement on security and administrative issues in Sinjar district is signed between the two.
Years-long dispute between Baghdad and Arbil over the governance of Sinjar had paved the way for the terror organizations’ use the area as a safe haven, especially ISIL and the PKK. Turkey has long been urging both Baghdad and Arbil over the growing influence of the PKK which was trying to use Sinjar as a passage from northern Iraq to Syria.
On Friday, the Iraqi Prime Ministry announced it reached a “historic deal” with the KRG, an agreement that will bolster the Iraqi federal authority in Sinjar under the constitution in terms of governance and security.
“The agreement will directly contribute to accelerate the return of the displaced families to their homes and ensure their stability in their areas,” said deputy speaker of the Iraqi parliament, Bashir al-Haddad.
Al-Haddad stressed the importance of the joint management between Baghdad and Arbil in dealing with the security of Sinjar along with coordination of public services as well as reconstruction of the infrastructure.
The Iraqi prime minister’s spokesperson, Ahmed Mulla Talal, said on Friday in a Twitter statement that the agreement will end the authority of intruding groups in Sinjar, referring to the PKK. The PKK managed to establish a foothold in Sinjar in mid-2014 under the pretext of protecting the local Yazidi community from ISIL. Around 450,000 Yazidis escaped Sinjar after the ISIL group took control of the region in mid-2014.
[HH] Turkey offers help
The statement also renewed Turkey’s long-standing offer to help the Iraqi authorities in their efforts to eradicate the terror groups from the region.
“On this occasion we once again reiterate our readiness to cooperate with the Iraqi authorities in ensuring stability and countering terrorism in Sinjar as well as in other regions of Iraq where the terrorist organization exists,” it said.
Turkey is continuing its anti-terror combats in many parts of northern Iraq where the PKK has had its headquarters and training camps for decades.