Taking into account possible escalation in Iraq at the end of September, this military activity looks like a pre-preperation “just in case”, though perhaps the Turkish General staff has a more serious agreement with the Iranian military on the subject of action to prevent the dismemberment of Iraq. The official explanation from the Turkish military emphasized that the military exercises are aimed at practicing cooperation in fighting terrorism. As DAESH is long gone from the area, it is quite clear who the Turks mean.
For the second year, the United States has denied a controversial Kurdish leader a visa to speak at an event at the presitigious National Press Club in Washington, D.C.
“The visa, it was actually refused,” Salih Muslim said in a video.
I am invited to deliver a lecture concerning geopolitics of the Kurdish region, of Kurdish people, concerning Kurdish identity – how we understand it in the geopolitical science, the ethno-sociological science I am developing in Russia. It is my first visit in Iraq and in Kurdistan and the Kurdish area, to Erbil. I am very happy because it is the first time I get to know better Kurds, to understand desires of Kurdish people, to speak with different personalities of academic circles, of political circles. It is a first meeting with the Kurdish people. I know some Kurds in Russia and elsewhere, but it is the first time that I am in the land of Kurds, that is very important.
Despite the fact that the Americans showed the flag on the Syrian-Turkish border in Rojava, clashes between Kurds and Turks continued, and on both sides of the border. In Turkey, the army conducts regular operations in mountainous areas against the Kurdistan workers ‘ Party, reporting the killed PKK members and seized weapons. The Kurds in turn report that attempts to ground the activity of the Turkish army in ‘ Afrīn turned losses of the Turks in the form of several destroyed and damaged armored vehicles (judging by the video, that the Turks at lost at least 2 M-60) and from 17 to 24 killed and wounded.
In an interview with BBC’s Persian Service, Mulla Hassib from Sulaimani says the Kurdish Muslims who are leaving Islam to join Zoroastrianism and another religion, must be given a period of three days to regret their decision or “they must be killed, executed”.
The Zoroastrian representation in the Kurdistan Region has filed a legal complaint against a Kurdish Islamic preacher whom they claim has issued a decree that all converts to the pre-Islamic faith must be killed if they did not repent within days.
The Kurdistan Region President recently stated he would declare independence the moment the former Iraqi Prime Minister Nuri al-Maliki resumed power.
In an interview with Sharq al-Awsat in Davos, Switzerland, Masoud Barzani, the Kurdistan Region President, said he could not “accept staying within an Iraq ruled by Maliki.”
The insurgency of the Kurdish PKK and its armed wing HPG (Hêzên Parastina Gel, People’s Defence Force, in Turkey) has intensified throughout 2016 in southeastern Turkey, causing a tightening of the Turkish government’s military and administrative repression. They regained control of cities like Cizre, Nusaybin, Sirnak or Diyarbakir at the price of major destruction. Many mountainous and rural areas, however, are under de facto control of the insurgency.
The Kurdistan Regional Government’s (KRG) Minister of Foreign Relations Falah Mustafa on Tuesday met the Russian Deputy Minister of Foreign Affairs and Special Presidential Representative for the Middle East and Africa, Mikhail Bogdanov, to discuss bilateral cooperation and the current situation in Iraq and Kurdistan.
I think that it is now necessary to appeal to the concept of Eurasianism. It is necessary to adapt the Eurasian model for Kurdistan. We must talk about the integration of the Kurdish people as a united historical community and its participation in the construction of the Eurasian project. This will involve a complete severing of relations with the Americans and the establishment of a long-term strategic union with Russia as a guarantor of world order. At the same time, with Russia’s help, the Kurds might be able to find a status quo with Ankara. In this situation, all the tension with Iran would be relieved and we could discuss the creation of a Kurdish-Shiite state or regions. All the current components of a Kurdish state could be considered as part of the Eurasian project.
Gedo emphasized that the issue is not dead and that the Russian side will continue contacts with the Damascus government. He said the proposed agreement allows for flexibility by stipulating that “each of the parties has the right to abrogate the agreement at any time provided it informs the other of such in writing.”
“The is the last point, it is the border that President Barzani assigned for us. If we are commanded, we will advance further. But for the time being we are here,” a Peshmerga official, told Rudaw.
Turkey warned Monday it would carry out more strikes on a Syrian Kurdish militia if it failed to retreat beyond the Euphrates River, as Washington condemned their weekend clashes as “unacceptable.”
Turkish forces pressed on with a two-pronged operation inside Syria against Daesh and the Syrian Kurdish People’s Protection Units (YPG), shelling over a dozen targets.
But strikes against the YPG are hugely sensitive as the Kurdish group — seen as a terror group by Ankara — is allied with Turkey’s NATO partner, the United States, in the fight against Daesh in Syria.
The political naivety of Kurds knew no bounds and culminated recently in the invitation to the US imperialism to establish a no-fly zone against the Syrian air force Rojava. Consider what function had fly zones of the imperialists in Libya. There had – as naive – Russia on such recessed to prevent a supposedly imminent massacre of the Libyan army in the population of Benghazi. In fact, the imperialists took advantage of the no-fly zone to bomb Libya quite up to the fall of his government. From this experience, Russia and China had learned the proclamation analog-fly zones by the UN Security Council not to agree in Syria.
On the 5th day of the operation “Euphrates Shield”, FSA troops with the support of the Turkish army launched an offensive South of Jarablus on position SDF/YPG. During the night the positions of the Kurds air strikes were deposited, and were under fire from tanks and artillery.
On the third day of the operation “Euphrates shield” continued to increase tension on the contact line of Pro-Turkish militants supported by Turkish troops and YPG forces/SDF.
1. During the day continued air strikes by the Turkish F-16 at an advanced position of the Kurds and the Turkish armored vehicles supported advancing troops “green”.
2. In fact, we are now seeing the formation of new lines, where as pulling forces, should be deployed sufficiently serious fights, if the Kurds are completely inferior.
3. Despite American demands for the abandonment Manbij, the radical part of the YPG is opposed to meeting the American demands and prefers a war with Turkey. It is highly likely that everything is going to this option.
Will Turkey’s military incursion, which began at 4am this morning, fare any better than its past initiatives in Syria? Its tanks, special forces amd artillery are backing at least 500 Syrian rebels in an attack on the Isis-held town of Jarabulus just west of the Euphrates River. The Turkish media speaks of the operation, known as “Euphrates Shield”, as aiming to create a 55-by-25 mile “safe zone” for refugees just south of the Syrian-Turkish border. But Turkish Deputy Prime Minister Numun Kurtulmus says that what we are seeing is “a short and results based operation”. Opposition forces said this evening that they were in control of the town, as US military officials said that American planes were conducting air strikes against Isis targets.
The claimed aim of the Turkish move is to close the Turkish border to ISIS. That claim is obviously nonsense. The border can be closed on the Turkish side. To move the crossing point a few kilometers south does not change anything. The second, more plausible claimed aim, is to prevent the movement of the Kurdish YPG forces, under the U.S. assigned label SDF, towards west-Syria. Such a move would create a Kurdish statelet all along the Turkish border and endanger Turkey itself while it is fighting a Kurdish insurgency on its own ground.
Russia lacks the political will to cleanse the Wahhabi terrorists and Kurdish separatists from northern Syrian itself, and for as much as one may support or condemn this, it’s a statement of fact that must be taken into account when analyzing and forecasting events. With this obvious constraint being a major factor influencing the state of affairs in Syria, it’s reasonable then that Syria, Russia, and Iran wouldn’t vocally object too much to Turkey tricking the US into doing this instead out of the pursuit of its own self-interests vis-à-vis the attempted normalization with Ankara.
Silo says if Russia and the United States agree, the Kurds can fight side by side with the SAA and the Russians. They have force (the Kurdish militias) are fighting volunteers from around the world. A few days ago in Turkey has been prepared and forwarded to Syria a group of mercenaries involved in the battle for Aleppo.