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Kurdish Supplement, 21-27/10/01

Kurdish Supplement, 21-27/10/01

*  Iraq Expects U.S. Attack With Kurdish, Turkmen Cooperation
*  Kurdish MPs Discuss Troop Deployments to Southern (Iraqi) Kurdistan [This
is difficult to understand through the less than perfect English
translation, but it seems that the Turkish Grand Assembly has passed a bill
to permit Turkish occupation of Southern Kurdistan/Northern Iraq]
*  A Rocket Attack At A U.N. Station In Zakho [Attacks on UN offices in
Southern Kurdistan/Northern Iraq. It appears they are quite frequent. No
indication here of who is responsible]
*  Iran Pressures Talabani to Terms of Agreement with Islamic Groups
[Readers will remember recent press reports of a Saddam/bin Laden plot to
introduce into the autonomous Kurdish zone a terrorist Islamic movement -
the Jund Al-Islam. This is referred to in the William Safire article,
ŒAdvance the story ...ı above. Here it appears that the is an
extremist offshoot of well-established local Kurdish Islamist forces,
supported by Iran]
*  Turkish Minister Insults Kurdish Cause and KDP on TV [Strained relations
between the KDP and Turkey. The possibility of an intensification of the US
war on Iraq brings with it the possibility of Kurdish independence in
northern Iraq. That brings with it the possibility of a Turkish invasion.
The KDP are anxious to assure the Turks that they donıt want independence,
and they are willing to do this at the expense of the Kurds in Turkey]
*  Isn't KDP a friend? [A Turkish newspaper defends the KDP on the grounds
that they have faithfully supported Turkey against the PKK]
*  Nechirvan Barzani gives three messages in Ankara [Assuring the Turks that
he is their friend. Note that ŒThe KDP had no evidence proving the claim
that the Jund-ul Islam group was  being directed by Osama Bin Ladenı]
*  Turkey must not let Barzani and Talabani to have a clear field in
Northern Iraq. [See comment on ŒTurkish Minister Insults Kurdish Cause ...ı
*  Turkish troops move into Iraq
*  Talabani Declares Amnesty For The Militant Islamists

Kurdistan Observer, 19th October

Iraqi authorities have taken precautionary military measures inside the
oil-rich city of  Kirkuk in anticipation of a U.S. military strike with
Kurdish and Turkmen cooperation,  according to a report in London's
"Al-Hayat" of 15 October. An informed Kurdish source in  Al-Sulaymaniyah has
told "Al-Hayat" that Iraqi military authorities have completed the  building
of 65 large military shelters northwest of Kirkuk. They have also started to
distribute light and medium weapons to the Arab tribes living in the Saliyi
area, northeast of  the city, and have begun crash course to train the newly
armed men in the Saqazli Camp  near Kirkuk. 

The source pointed out that a Special Guard unit executed three officers
inside the army's 1st  Corps headquarters in Kirkuk. One of the executed
officers is said to be Staff Major General  Hamad Al-Jamali. Also, the
director of the press office in Al-Ta'mim province was arrested.  In
addition, five military companies from the northern branch of the ruling
Ba'th Party have  been formed; they have the task of controlling the
conditions inside the city in case of sudden  disturbances. These companies
are directly linked to the office of Qusay Saddam Husseyn.
y troops.html

by Oktay Ucar
Kurdistan Observer, 19th October (from Ozur Politika,18th October)

Deputies elected from the Kurdish provinces considered the deployment of
Turkish troops to  South Kurdistan as the war against Afghanistan continues,
a wrong and unnecessary  attempt. Mahfuz Gulen, Enlightenment and
Development Party (AKP) Deputy, made a  striking statement on the claim of
Turkish officials ³We support the integrity of territory of  Iraq² which
conflicts with the military deployment. Gulen stated that they have recently
gone to Bagdat, capital city of Iraq, adding that the Chairman of Iraqi
Parliament have said  ³We cannot make decision about the Northern Iraq. The
region is in the hands of  Kurds. Turkey should negotiate its problems in
Northern Iraq not with us but with the Kurds  in the region.² 

Mustafa Kamalak, Husamettin Korkutata and Ibrahim Konukoglu, deputies from
Maras,  Bingol and Antep respectively gave statements on the matter as well
as Gulen. The four  deputies agree on not approving the deployment and think
that Turkey will end up suffering  harm in case of a military operation or
even occupation.

Here is the comments of the deputies:

Mahfuz Gulen, Bingol Deputy: We do not want war any more. We as 11 Turkish
parliamentarians have recently gone to Iraq. All Iraqi deputies including
the  chairman did not made any statement on the split apart of Iraq. They
said that they could [not? ­ PB] make decisions on Northern Iraq, saying
that the region was in the hands of Kurds. The  deputies pointed out that
Turkey should negotiate its problems in Northern Iraq not with  them but the
Kurds in the region. That means that even Iraqi parliament agree that
Northern  Iraq belongs to Kurds. I still do not understand what Turkey
pursues. Ever Iraq does not  debate on its integrity. Turkey brings up the
matter, I do not understand this as well. I do not  think that Turkish army
will attempt to occupy Northern Iraq. It does not have enough  strength to
do this. The region is passing through a very critical period.

Mustafa Kamalak, Maras Deputy: The Turkish Grand National Assembly (TBMM)
has  passed a bild [sic] to deploy troops abroad We are against this bild
[sic]. We will apply to the  Constitution Court for it to be annulled. I do
not have enough information about the  deployment of troops to Northern
Iraq. Turkey is the country which will be most effected by  a conflict in
the region.

Husamettin Korkutata, Bingol Deputy: Turkey is against any operation on Iraq
especially  now. A conflict climate in the region will give Turkey harm. If
Turkey deploy troops to  Afghanistan, it should guarantee Iraq. Otherwise
Turkey will drag into a big fire.

Ibrahim Konukoglu, Antep Deputy: Turkey deploys troops to Northern Iraq from
time to  time and these troops are withdrawn. Turkey is trying to do its
best in order to prevent a  violent climate in the region. We do not want
the war in Afghanistan to leap into Iraq.  Iraq is our neighbour. Operations
there will effect us, like it or not. Deployment troops to  Northern Iraq
does not comply with the policies of Turkey.

The Kurdistan Observer, 19th October

A U.N. headquarter in Zakho responsible for  distribution of food in
accordance with  U.N. Resolution 986 was attacked Thursday by  rockets from
a nearby location, reported sources from Duhok in Southern Kurdistan.

Two guards were injured as the result of this attack. 

The KDP forces rushed to the scene to investigate this incident.  This type
of attack is   unprecedented as all previous aggressions toward U.N.
personnel have been in the form of  planting small explosives.

The Kurdistan Observer, 20th October

A Kurdish source in Southern Kurdistan told the  Kurdistan Observer today
that in a meeting held a few days ago between the PUK leader  Jalal Talabani
and a high ranking Iranian government official, the Iranian government
strongly denied claims made by the PUK suggesting that the Jund Al-Islam is
linked to and  funded by Bin Ladenıs organization.

The Iranian officials charged that these suggestions were baseless
allegations that had been  fabricated by Israeli agents.

Last month, Jund Al-Islam, an organization founded by extremists from the
Islamic  Movement of Kurdistan (IMK) and from the Kurdistan Islamic Group
(KIG), ambushed a  unit of PUK forces in Hawraman areas, resulting in many
casualties including the killing of  some 40 PUK members following their

In retaliation, the PUK deployed their elite troops to Halabja areas,
declaring war against  Jund Al-Islam, the IMK, and the KIG.  Consequently,
the PUK forces took control of  Halabja and its surrounding areas following
the defeat of the Islamic groups.

Subsequently, Iran succeeded, after placing pressure on the PUK leadership,
in convening a  meeting between Jalal Talabani and the Islamic groups in the
city of Qasri Shireen in  Eastern Kurdistan.

According to the source, the Iranian officials persuaded Talabani to agree
on their terms that  called for the return of the Islamic parties, the IMK
and KIG, to Halabja, and giving in  return the PUK a symbolic presence in
that region.

As to Jund Al-Islam, the Iranian officials asked the group to dismantle
their organization and  rejoin their parent parties of the IMK and KIG.

Kurdistan Observer, 22nd October (from Gulan Media ( KDP))

In a TV-interview in October 10, Turkish Interior Minister, Abdulqadir Chai,
describes the  Kurdistan Democratic Partyıs forces as a group of ³bandits²,
and makes rude remarks on  Kurdıs struggle for self-determination. 

In his written statement, an unnamed spokesman for KDP condemns and severely
criticizes  Mr. Chaiıs remarks and writes that the Ministerıs comments are
³against the spirit of good  neighborliness and diplomacy. 

The spokesman writes that his party and Kurds hope that Mr.Chaiıs remarks
reflect only his  own personal view and are not representative of the whole
of the Turkish Government or  national opinion. 

In a new era in the worldıs history where democracy and dialogue seem to
have the last  words, it is sad that a neighboring Turkish Minister would
hurt the feelings of millions of  people in Kurdistan by offending them and
their struggle, the spokesman writes in his written  statement.

Editorial by Ilnur Cevik
Kurdish Observer, 23rd October (from Turkish Daily News)

The headline asks openly "Isn't KDP a friend?" Our answer is clear: Yes  of
course. They have proven this over time by fighting the PKK separatist
terrorist when  it really mattered for Turkey. 

That means the Kurdistan Democracy Party (KDP) has put its heart into the
fight  against the separatist organization at a very high cost. Not only the
KDP forces but also  ordinary Kurds have been killed at the hands of PKK
terrorists. The KDP regards the  PKK as a terrorist organization and says
even if Turkey halts the fight against it Barzani  and his forces will
continue this fight to the bitter end. 

The KDP of Masoud Barzani is the leading power in northern Iraq and will
remain so  even when Iraq's sovereignty is properly restored throughout that
country. It has a very  strong tribal background as well as a democratic
structure which has been clearly  manifested since the KDP has gained
control of a major portion of northern Iraq. 

It is true that the current situation in northern Iraq is a temporary
arrangement with KDP  and the Patriotic Union of Kurdistan (PUK) running the
region through their respective  administrations. They have both done a good
job establishing respectable  administrations which have been serving the
region and its people well. They have  managed to build the neglected
infrastructure of the region and the process is still  continuing. As a
matter of fact both administrations want Turkish contractors to be  involved
in this building process. 

At times people here in Turkey have been highly suspicious that the Kurds
are quietly  building all the institutions of a state and will create a de
factor situation. The Kurds  vehemently deny this and say even if they
wanted to do this it would be practically  impossible. 

However, it is also true that some of the applications have been more in the
direction of  state functions and of a more permanent nature than a
temporary arrangement. Turks  think that this will close the door for the
reintegration of the region with Iraq and this is  creating nightmares for
officials in Ankara. 

These kind of misunderstandings can be sorted out with positive applications
and  goodwill. Some local Kurdish officials may have misrepresented the
issue or have  created wrong impressions with their nationalistic attitude.
But this does not change the  fact that the general intention of the KDP is
to be a part of democratic Iraq. 

The KDP could contribute to the democratic development of the whole of Iraq
and not  only the north. The Iranians are fully aware of this and the key
role Barzani and his  administration plays in the region. That is why they
are eager to court Barzani and the  KDP. 

Necirvan Barzani, prime minister of the KDP administration, is leading a
government  which is serving the people. The Iranians hosted him last week
and he could have gone  on from there to his trip to Europe. But he made a
point of coming to Ankara to iron out  some of the misunderstandings. Ankara
has openly told him its concerns. Necirvan  Barzani has explained to them
his side of the story and his concerns. Now is the time to  mend fences and
make a fresh start on the part of friendship and cooperation.

by Saadet Oruc
Kurdistan Observer, 23rd October (from Turkish Daily News)

Massoud Barzani-led Kurdistan Democratic Party (KDP) reiterated its
commitment to  the territorial integrity of Iraq in Ankara, demanding Turkey
"to stop using the Habour  border gate as a red card" against themselves, a
leading official of the Iraqi Kurdish  party said on Monday. 

In an exclusive interview with the Turkish Daily News on Monday in Ankara,
Nechirvan  Barzani, head of the local government in Northern Iraq stated
that they felt that there  was a misunderstanding among Turkish officials
about the KDP. 

"Perhaps, there was false information from whatever circles, maybe from the
region,"  Barzani told TDN. 

Turkey has been declaring its concerns regarding the possibility of the
establishment  of an independent Kurdish state in northern Iraq and repeated
remarks came from  Prime Minister Bulent Ecevit that any development
concerning northern Iraq will  negatively affect Ankara. 

Stopping in Ankara on his way to Europe, Barzani met with senior officials
from the  Middle East Department of the Turkish Foreign Ministry and tried
to ease Turkey's  concerns which were strongly expressed by Turkish

Barzani was received by Ministry Undersecretary Ugur Ziyal. 

Three key messages given by KDP to Turkish officials are as follows: 

Iraqi Kurdish problem should be solved inside a united Iraq,   The KDP had
no evidence proving the claim that the Jund-ul Islam group was  being
directed by Osama Bin Laden,   Ankara uses Habour border gate as a red card
against the KDP. 

Technical experts to meet for Habour 

Turkish officials and the KDP decided to meet with technical experts for
solving the  deadlock concerning trade through the Habour border gate. 

Diesel trade through the Habour border gate stopped recently and KDP argues
that  there is a political attitude against themselves. 

Position on PKK remain unchanged 

Barzani told TDN that their position on the PKK remains unchanged. "We still
consider  the PKK as a terrorist organization," he said. 

However, the rejection of KDP for launching crossborder operations against
the PKK  in lands controlled by itself created anger in Ankara among
military officials and  Turkish military assets were pulled back, regional
sources stated. 

Turkey deployed its land forces troops, but not the gendarmerie, along the
southern  border.

by Sukru Elekdag (former Turkish ambassador to the United States) 
Kurdistan Observer 24th October [from TDN Press Scanner, October 23, 2001]

Sabah : Ankara is seriously worried about the possibility that a military
operation will be staged  against Iraq in the course of the process of
waging war on terrorism in the wake of Sept. 11.  On CNN's Larry King Live
program last week Prime Minister Bulent Ecevit stressed that if  that
happened Iraq would be split up, and that this would create problems for
Turkey's  independence and territorial integrity. 

Ecevit's remarks require that we ask the following questions and analyze the
relevant issues: 

Is it definite that a Kurdish state will be founded in Northern Iraq if
Saddam gets  overthrown?  How would Turkey be affected by the establishment
of an independent  Kurdish state?  Is the United States supporting
establishment of a Kurdish state?  What kind  of strategy should Turkey

Ankara's view on the first question is quite clear. Ankara believes that
Iraq's unity can be  preserved only with an authoritarian rule; and that if
Saddam gets overthrown Iraq will be  split up. 

During the Ottoman era Iraq was governed as three separate provinces or
states: The  Baghdad province was predominantly Sunni-Arab, Basra
Shiite-Arab and Mosul  Kurdish and Turcoman.      Ankara thinks that such a
state would forge alliances with some of Turkey's neighbors as  well as with
the outlawed Kurdistan Workers' Party (PKK) to make territorial demands on
Turkey, adhering to the "Greater Kurdistan" cause and fueling Kurdish

These worries are not groundless, considering that in the aftermath of 1991
the U.S. policy has favored the establishment of a Kurdish state. 

Indeed, it was only with Washington's support that a parliamentary election
could be held in  Northern Iraq in May 1992 and a Kurdish government could
be formed. 

And the "Kurdistan Federated State" was proclaimed on Oct. 4, 1992 in the
wake of the visit  [Northern Iraqi Kurdish leaders] Massoud Barzani and
Jalal Talabani paid to the United  States. 

During the Gulf crisis, Turgut Ozal, the president at the time, maintained
elbow contact with  U.S. President George Bush of how to split up Iraq.
Ozal's "vision" was as follows: First a  Kurdish state would be established
in Northern Iraq and then ensure that it joins Turkey as a  "Kurdish
federated state." Thus, a "Turkish-Kurdish Federal State" would be created. 

Turkey's being plunged on such a dangerous path was prevented thanks to Gen.
Necip  Torumtay to resigned as chief of staff when Ozal gave him
instructions to "occupy" Iraq's  Mosul and Kirkuk regions. 

Yet, the "Iraqi [Kurdish? - PB] Federated State" proved short-lived because
the tribal system that prevails in  the region is hardly suitable for
creation of a state. 

It is a fact that at a certain point the United States' Northern Iraq policy
took a path  hazardous to Turkey, and that was due to a great extent to the
erroneous reasoning of Ozal. 

Under the current international conditions, on the other hand, the United
States should well  be aware that it would go against American interests if
the United States conducted the kind  of policies that would result in the
establishment of a Kurdish state in Northern Iraq. 

If the United States did create a landlocked Kurdish state surrounded by
hostile countries on  all sides, a state which would be dependent on the
United States in all aspects, Washington  would, whether it liked it or not,
have to "index" its Middle East policy to the safeguarding  of that state. 

That would cause Iraq, Syria and Iran, countries who have a Kurdish minority
of their own,  would be inclined to resolve the differences among them and
to create a bloc against  America and Israel. 

In other words, the consequences of such a policy could undermine the U.S.
interests in the  region. 

It is a very strong possibility that the moment they decide that the United
States has --  relatively -- attained its goals in Afghanistan, the "hawks"
in Washington will push for the  opening of a second front and succeed in
initiating a military operation against Iraq. 

Turkey must be prepared for such developments. Turkey must not let Massoud
Barzani and  Jalal Talabani to have a clear field in Northern Iraq. 

Otherwise, Turkey will not have a say in the restructuring of Iraq in the
post-Saddam period.

ISN (International Relations & Security Network), 25th October

Iraq accused Turkey on Thursday of stationing troops in its
Kurdish-controlled north and asked UN Secretary-General Kofi Anan to press
Turkey to withdraw its forces. Iraq's UN envoy Mohammed Aldouri said in a
letter to Anan that Turkey sent 25 to 30 tanks and 45 to 60 trucks laden
with troops into northern Iraq earlier this month and some were stationed

"The UN should shoulder its responsibility and demand the Turkish government
to stop immediately its military aggression against Iraq," the letter said.
Turkish troops regularly pursue separatist Kurdish rebels from southeast
Turkey into northern Iraq, which Iraqi Kurds, with the help of the US and
Britain, wrested from Baghdad's control after the 1991 Gulf War. Some 5'000
Turkish Kurd separatists are believed to be based in northern Iraq and Iran
since fighting in their campaign for independence dropped off dramatically
after the 1999 capture of Abdullah Ocalan, commander of the Kurdistan
Workers Party (PKK) guerrillas.

Aldouri's letter said dozens of Turkish vehicles laden with troops and
military supplies entered Iraq from Turkey on October 6 and 9 and headed for
Safat in the north. US and British warplanes based in Turkey patrol a no-fly
zone over northern Iraq established in 1991 to prevent Baghdad regaining
control of the Kurdish enclave.
y islamists.html

Kurdistan Observer, 26th October 

ERBIL, Kurdistan, (GULAN)‹ The militant Muslim rebels of Jund Al Islam may
return home  under a general amnesty granted by Patriotic Union of
Kurdistanıs leader Jalal Talabani. 

In a written statement published in the daily Kurdistani New Thursday, Mr.
Talabani urges the rebels to  abandon Jund Al Islam and return to their
homes in Kurdistan. 

The statement, which is issued by the Talabani secretariat, says that the
general amnesty embraces both the  rebels and the leaders of Jund Al Islam,
with the exception of the assassins of KDP member F. Hariri and  those who
participated in the massacre of the Kheli Hama village. 

Fierce fighting broke out between PUK forces and Jund Al Islam at the end of
September this year, in which  more than 45 people were killed and many more
wounded. PUK accused this fraction of starting the fighting  by attacking
their military positions in Halabja area, Southern Kurdistan. Most political
parties, including  Massoud Barzaniıs KDP, condemned the rebels and offered
Talabani their support.
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