Peshmerga Chief of Staff: Lack of coordination and external influences led to the clashes in Makhmour

Peshmerga Chief of Staff: Lack of coordination and external influences led to the clashes in Makhmour

Shafaq News / On Thursday, the Chief of Staff of the Peshmerga Forces, Lieutenant General Issa Ouzair, stated that the main reason for the incident at Qarah Jogh Mountain in the Makhmour district was the lack of coordination between the Peshmerga forces and the Iraqi army, in addition to external influences that led to armed clashes between the two sides.

He made this statement during a press briefing on the sidelines of the funeral ceremony for the commander of the 18th Infantry Brigade in the Peshmerga forces, Colonel Saleh Zarari, who succumbed to his injuries sustained during the recent clashes with the Iraqi army in Makhmour a few days ago.

Ouzair stated that 17 Peshmerga members were wounded, including two in critical condition, and two Iraqi army soldiers were killed, with eight others injured. He pointed out that there were multiple reasons for the incident, but the primary cause was the lack of coordination and hasty attempts to establish control over the areas vacated by the Kurdistan Workers' Party (PKK), resulting in chaos in the region. Unfortunately, external actors played a role in this incident.

The Chief of Staff of the Peshmerga Forces noted that a committee formed by the Commander-in-Chief of the Armed Forces, Mohammed Shia Al Sudani, has completed its tasks, and they are awaiting the release of the investigation results.

PKK had announced a complete withdrawal of its forces from the Makhmour refugee camp, located south of Erbil, on October 19th. This withdrawal occurred after ISIS’s threat diminished, and some of the party's fighters had been transferred to the camp in 2014 to combat ISIS members.

The casualty toll from the clashes between the Peshmerga and the Iraqi army in the Makhmour area a few days ago has risen to three individuals.

The General Command of the Peshmerga, the military wing of PKK, issued a statement on the matter last Monday. The statement expressed deep sorrow and condolences to the families of the victims and wished a speedy recovery to the wounded. It also reiterated their commitment to working with the federal government to find a comprehensive and lasting solution that would ensure security and stability across Iraq.

On Sunday, Special Forces Brigadier Yahya Rasoul, the spokesman for the Commander-in-Chief of the Armed Forces, confirmed that three individuals were killed and seven were injured in the armed confrontation between the Iraqi army and the Peshmerga near the town of Makhmour, located on the border between Nineveh and Erbil governorates.

He further announced the formation of a high-level committee to investigate the incident and emphasized the importance of all leaders and authorities at all levels to exercise restraint, whether from federal government units or the Peshmerga, and to act wisely, prioritize common interests, and prevent opportunities for enemies of Iraq. This incident sent a message of unity to the world, showing the strength of the Iraqi people.

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