MESOP NEWS TODAYS GREAT ANNOUNCEMENT : Referendum on Kurdistan’s independence to be held this year: Barzani
25 March 2017 – HEWLÊR-Erbil, Iraq’s Kurdistan region,— A referendum on the independence of Kurdistan Region is set to take place this year to gauge support for leaving Iraq, Kurdistan Prime Minister Nechirvan Barzani said.“Yes, there will be a referendum this year. No question,” PM Barzani has told Trudy Rubin, according to a column published on Times Record News.
MESOP NEWS ACTUAL Iraq Situation Report: March 1-20, 2017 – by Emily Anagnostos, Jennifer Cafarella, and Jessa Rose Dury-Agri (ISW)
MESOP : IRANIAN INVADERS COOPERATE WITH PKK IN IRAQ
Regional actors are vying to dominate the post-ISIS security structure and political order in northern Iraq. Turkey and the Kurdistan Democratic Party (KDP) are threatening the Kurdistan Worker’s Party (PKK) and its affiliates in Sinjar, west of Mosul City. Sinjar is a historic flashpoint for ethnic tensions and at the center of Turkish, Iranian, and Kurdish interests. The KDP seeks to incorporate Sinjar into the Kurdistan Regional Government (KRG), expanding the KRG’s territorial control. Turkey supports the KDP’s desire to move against the PKK and has threatened to participate in a direct attack. The desire to move against Sinjar could bring Turkey and the KDP into conflict with Iran. Iranian-backed elements of the Popular Mobilization are stationed nearby at Tel Afar and have claimed that the PKK-backed Yazidi militia in Sinjar is part of the Popular Mobilization.
Asharq Al-Awsat 25 March 2017 –Baghdad- “Iraqi Cleric and Leader of Sadrist Movement Moqtada al-Sadr is expected to announce the dissociation of Saraya al-Salam, the military arm of his bloc, during his speech infront of his followers in Baghdad on Friday,” an official in the Sadrist Movement told Asharq Al-Awsat.
MESOP NEWS LATEST : KURDISH KRG OFFICIAL MET WITH DONALD TRUMP – Kurdish presence at coalition meetings doesn’t signal US policy change
SOUTH KURDISTAN (IRAQ)
By Rudaw 4 hours ago – 24 March 2017 – ERBIL, Kurdistan Region — The presence of a Kurdish delegation at this week’s US-led anti-ISIS international coalition meeting in Washington, D.C., shouldn’t be seen as a shift in US policy in regards to the Kurdistan Region, a US official indicated Thursday. “I’m not going to draw comparisons,” said US State Department acting spokesman Mark Toner after being asked by a reporter if the presence of a Kurdistan Regional Government (KRG) delegation at the talks represented a US policy shift from former President Barack Obama to the current Donald Trump.
Fuad Hussein, the Chief of Staff to the Kurdish president, attended the talks in Washington, met with Trump along with other top US officials, and the KRG’s presence was noted by Secretary of State Rex Tillerson in his opening remarks on Wednesday.
Basnews English – 24/03/2017 – HALABJA — Kurdistan Workers Party (PKK) won’t be allowed to spread its armed forces across Halabja province, south of Kurdistan Region, said a Patriotic Union of Kurdistan (PUK) local official.Ahmed Qadafar also rejected the reports on increasing PKK’s military presence in the area, saying that there are some supporters of the PKK across Halabja province, but their number is not concerning.
MESOP NEWS : PKK TROUBLE MAKERS CAUSE INSTABILITY IN KURDISTAN – PKK Moves Fighters from Qandil to Sinjar: Official
Basnews English – 24/03/2017 – SINJAR — Kurdistan Workers’ Party (PKK) has started mobilizing its armed forces from Qandil mountainous areas to the Yezidi town of Sinjar, and from there to the neighboring Syrian Kurdistan (Rojava), an official said.
“The PKK continues causing troubles in Sinjar as it has turned [the Yezidi town] into a military base,” said Wais Naif, head of Sinjar mayoral council. Criticizing the increasing number of PKK guerrillas and constant military mobilizations in the area, Naif said fresh fighters are heading from Qandil to Sinjar and Rojava. Following a military clash between the Roj Peshmerga and PKK forces earlier this month near Sinjar, Yezidi officials have been blaming PKK for sending more fighters in to further enflame the tensions. www.mesop.de
MESOP NEWS BACKGROUNDER : Revenge Being Meted Out on ISIS linked Sunni Tribes of Iraq – FrontLine “Iraq Uncovered”
23 Mar 2017 09:52 AM PDT – This Front Line documentary — “Iraq Uncovered‘ — on Iraqi Sunni tribes & the revenge that is being meted out on them by Shia militias that follow behind US and Iraqi regular military is a cautionary tail for Syria. The same thing is likely to take place in Syria at the hands of both the YPG (Kurds) and Syrian Arab Army.
NEWRUZ IS NOT LICENSED TO PKK/PYD – BUT OPEN ANYTIME FOR ALL KURDISH PEOPLE
Basnews English – Banning Nawroz Proves PYD’s Dictatorship: Monitor
ERBIL — The Democratic Center for Human Rights in Kurdistan Region has criticized the Democratic Union Party (PYD) for preventing people from celebrating Nawroz, saying that the decision proves the party’s dictatorship ruling. The institution said in statement on Monday that PYD is imposing such arbitrary rulings on people via its illegal ruling. It also blamed PYD for sealing political offices belonging to rival parties, among them the Kurdistan Democratic Party of Syria (KDP-S) and the Kurdish National Council (ENKS). www.mesop.de
State Department spokesman says U.S. supports a unified Iraq
Mesop – WASHINGTON,— The U.S. State Department spokesman Mark Toner reiterated on Monday his country’s support to Iraq in defeating Islamic State (IS) and restoring stability to the liberated areas. Toner, during a press conference, told NRT that Iraq’s unity is an internal matter for the county and constituencies to discuss, when he was asked if the U.S. was firm in the idea of unified Iraq.“We also want to encourage them [Iraq] to take the necessary steps to prevent the re-emergence of IS, and to – we also want to communicate our support for a prosperous, unified, and democratic Iraq going forward,” he added.
Hashd al-Shaabi Shi’ite, the largest militia group in Iraq, is composed of over 60 brigades and units, each of which is overseen by a faction or a leader and most of them are backed by Iran.
The documents obtained by BasNews show that Hashd al-Shaabi consists of 66 different brigades and units each of which under a name. Among those groups are Badr Organization, Asaib Ahl Haq, Saraya Salam, al-Nujabaa Movement, Saraya Khurasani, Said al-Shuhadaa Brigade, Imam Ali Brigades, Saraya al-Jihad, Ali Akbar Regiment, Jund al-Imam Brigade, Iraqi Hizbollah, and others.