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Kurds warn of “violent reaction” if Iraqi army enters their areas


A senior Kurdish leader says Kurdish militia or peshmerga will confront Iraqi army units attempting to enter Kurdish areas. Mahmoud Sinkawi said if Iraqi troops moved into Kurdish towns and villages in order to evacuate government buildings occupied by Kurdish factions and peshmerga they will be met with a "violent reaction." The threats signal a growing row between the Kurds who control three provinces in northern Iraq and the central government...

[46680]



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Kurds warn of “violent reaction” if Iraqi army enters their areas

Azzaman

Azzaman, August 25, 2008


A senior Kurdish leader says Kurdish militia or peshmerga will confront Iraqi army units attempting to enter Kurdish areas.

Mahmoud Sinkawi said if Iraqi troops moved into Kurdish towns and villages in order to evacuate government buildings occupied by Kurdish factions and peshmerga they will be met with a "violent reaction."

The threats signal a growing row between the Kurds who control three provinces in northern Iraq and the central government.

While the government acknowledges full Kurdish autonomy over the provinces of Arbil, Sulaimaniya and Dahouk it is demanding that Kurdish peshmerga evacuate areas falling outside the administrative borders of the three provinces.

The Kurds have exploited the weakness of the central government by sending their militias to control larges swathes of territory particularly in the restive provinces of Diyala, Nineveh and Kirkuk.

The government has demanded the militias leave towns and villages mainly inhabited by Kurds within the administrative borders of Diyala.

The Kurds were issued two ultimatums but both were not adhered to, forcing the army to barge into the region of Qara tappa on the border of Iran.

The troops forced the militias out of the government buildings they occupied. They also controlled government buildings which Kurdish political factions had confiscated and used as offices.

In his warning Sinkawi, the Kurdish militia leader, also alluded to the armed conflict between the Mahdi army, the militia group of the Shiite cleric Moqtada al-Sadr and Iraqi troops.

The Shiite militias were forced to surrender their offices to the Iraqi army.

Sinkawi said Kurdish militias will not accept what happened to the "outlawed" Mahdi Army.

A Mahdi Army representative rebuked Sinkawi, saying the Shiite militia responded positively to a government order to surrender all state buildings they were using.

"The Mahdi Army is not the outlaw. The outlaws are those who are refusing to give the government buildings they have occupied," said Abdulsattar al-Battat.







:: Article nr. 46680 sent on 25-aug-2008 18:18 ECT

www.uruknet.info?p=46680

Link: www.azzaman.com/english/index.asp?fname=news%5C2008-08-25%5Ckurd.htm



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