In the last two days the police and armor from the 9thDivision moved out of Abu Saif in the south, took the town of Yarmouk. The Golden Div joined in and together they have freed the Mosul Airport, Ghazalni Camp, and entered Tel Ruman, Mamun, Wadi Hajar, Hawl al-Josaq and Dandan. (Medecins Sans Frontieres)
February 24 the Iraqi forces (ISF) secured the Mosul airport and Ghazlani camp and headed north into the city itself. The Golden Division secured Ghazlani, while the Federal Police and Rapid Reaction Division, supported by armor of the 9thDivision did the same for Mosul airport. Large numbers of Islamic State fighters surrenderedto the police at the airfield, something that has not really been reported before. This could point to the insurgents’ morale breaking. The Golden Division then movedinto the Maamun Wadi Hajar neighborhoods to the northwest of Ghazlani. The two police units went for Hawl al-Josaq and Dandan, which are directly north of the airport, freeing the latter. The army’s 9th Division and the Hashd’s Al Abbas Division took Tal Ruman that is to the east of Maamun. The ISF were using bulldozers to make new roadways to avoid the main thoroughfares, which have been laced with IEDs. Moving to the outskirts of the city was relatively easy, but now the real fight is beginning as the ISF enter the Mosul itself.
KRG Supports Autonomy for Sinjar: KRG Representative to US – KRG has no issue with autonomy for Yezidis, Bayan Sami Abdul Rahman says
Shoguna B. Sobir – 25/02/2017 – ERBIL — The creation of autonomous areas for Yazidis and Christians in Iraq would not be opposed by the Kurdistan Regional Government (KRG), according to the KRG Representative to the United States Bayan Sami Abdul Rahman, who on Thursday spoke at the Hudson Institute, a non-profit think tank based in Washington, DC.
HDP Describes Barzani’s Visit to Turkey “Important” – HDP welcomes Barzani’s stance on its detained officialsö
Basnews English – 25/02/2017 – 15:28 – ERBIL — The pro-Kurdish Peoples’ Democratic Party (HDP) representative in the Kurdistan Region Abid Ika welcomed Kurdistan Region President Masoud Barzani’s stance on detaining the HDP officials by the Turkish authorities, expecting Barzani to discuss the Kurds’ issue in Turkey with the Turkish officials.
In an interview with the German Newspaper Frankfurter Allgemeine Zeitung on Friday, Barzani renewed his call on Ankara to release the HDP co-leader Selahattin Demirtas as it may serve in the interest of the peace process.
Barzani: Kurdistan Independence an Issue Merely Between Erbil and Baghdad – The Kurdish president has also renewed a call on Ankara to release HDP Leader
Basnews English – 24/02/2017 – 18:18 – ERBIL — Kurdistan Region President Masoud Barzani has once again made it clear that the Kurdish independence is a matter of debate between Erbil and Baghdad, and it has nothing to do with the neighboring countries.
The Kurdish right to hold a referendum on self-determination is “a natural, God-given right to the people in Kurdistan,” said Barzani in an interview with the German Newspaper Frankfurter Allgemeine Zeitung, reported by Kurdistan24.
US Changes Rules of Engagement for Mosul Fight in Iraq !
By Susannah George and Balint Szlanko – 2017-02-24 08:18 GMT – SOUTH OF MOSUL, Iraq (AP) — U.S. Army Lt. Col. James Browning juggled phone calls on an overstuffed sofa in a small village south of Mosul. His counterparts in the Iraqi army’s 9th Division were pushing toward western Mosul, just a few miles away and were coming under mortar fire from the Islamic State group as they moved on a power station.
Mesud Barzani im F.A.Z.-Gespräch Irakische Kurden sollen über Unabhängigkeit abstimmen – Teheran und Ankara wollen einen unabhängigen Kurdenstaat verhindern. Doch genau den strebt Massud Barzani an. Der Kurdenführer will ein Referendum über die Loslösung Kurdistans vom Irak.
23.02.2017, von Michael Martens – FAZ – Der irakische Kurdenführer Massud Barzani hat ein Referendum über die Loslösung der autonomen Region Kurdistan vom Irak angekündigt. Ein solches Referendum abzuhalten sei „ein natürliches, gottgegebenes Recht des Volkes in Kurdistan“, sagte Barzani in einem Gespräch mit dieser Zeitung. Einwände aus Teheran und Ankara, wo man einen unabhängigen kurdischen Staat verhindern will, wies Barzani zurück.
MESOP NEWS – WAR CRIMINAL ASYLANTS IN GERMANY – Former Iraqi Soldier Prosecuted in Germany for War Crimes
Mira Rojkan – 23 February 2017 – BASNEWS – LEEDS — A German court in Berlin started the hearing of a case against a former Iraqi soldier who was charged with war crimes after allegedly taking pictures with and of human heads belonging to two Islamic State (IS) militants.
20 Febr 2017 – MESOP – SULAIMANI,— U.S. Vice President Mike Pence, during a meeting with Massoud Barzani on the sidelines of the Munich Security Conference on Friday, expressed his country’s support for a “unified, federal and democratic Iraq.”
The Vice President office said in a statement released on Saturday that Pence “encouraged close cooperation between the Government of Iraq and Kurdistan Regional Government [KRG].”
Iraqi Kurds keeping Christians and Yazidis from going home: Advocates
Posted on February 19, 2017 by Editorial Staff in Christians, Yazidis – John Rossomando | investigative Project
Iraq’s Assyrian Christians and Yazidis face an uncertain future, and advocates claim that the Kurdish Regional Government (KRG) intends to prevent the minority groups from returning to the lands they fled in 2014 when ISIS took over. They also don’t forget that the KRG and its Peshmerga militia fighters refused to defend them from the ISIS onslaught in 2014.