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Attackers of KDP, PUK offices must be tried

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Attackers of KDP, PUK offices must be tried

PostAuthor: Anthea » Sat Sep 21, 2019 10:48 pm

Attackers of KDP, PUK
offices must be tried


Kurdistan Regional Government (KRG) Interior Minister Rebar Ahmed has vowed that anyone found to have been behind the firing of gunshots on party offices in Sulaimani and Erbil will be tried in court as Friday's attackers continue to remain at large

"Whoever acts contrary to the law and disrespects party offices is acting against the policies of the Kurdistan Regional Government (KRG). Therefore whoever or any side is behind them, it must be dealt with by law and the criminals must be tried," Ahmed announced.

Mahmoud Sangawi, a senior PUK official and Peshmerga commander, was barred from entering Erbil on Thursday.

In the wake of the move, shots were fired at the KDP headquarters in Sulaimani in the early hours of Friday. Hours later, a PUK office in Erbil was shot at.

The identity of Friday's attackers has not yet been established.

Commenting on the reason behind Sangawi's bar from entry, Ahmed said "there was no hands behind this incident and it will be resolved. We have a good understanding with all the sides."

The Ministry of Interior, which has ultimate authority over the Region’s checkpoints, had earlier issued a statement insisting it had no hand in the decision to block Sangawi and described the incident as “unfortunate”.

However, it is possible the incident is connected to a political spat involving the KDP’s leader Masoud Barzani.

Speaking at a PUK event in mid-June this year, while the two parties were locked in government formation talks and a dispute over who should govern Kirkuk, Sangawi referred to Barzani as a “small man” and accused him of appointing Baathist collaborators to top military posts. In fiery response, Barzani’s media office called the comments "the lowest and cheapest."

Relations between the two biggest Kurdish parties have long been strained ever since they fought a brief civil war in the 1990s, but had seen notable improvement in recent years. Old rivalries often surface nevertheless.

Control of checkpoints is a favorite means of pressuring political rivals in the Kurdistan Region. The most notorious case was in 2015 when the KDP prevented members of the Change Movement (Gorran) opposition from entering Erbil to attend an important session of parliament. Then-parliamentary speaker Yousif Mohammed and several Gorran ministers were turned away, provoking a bitter political crisis.

https://www.rudaw.net/english/middleeas ... /210920191
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Attackers of KDP, PUK offices must be tried

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