MESOP REPORT : Yezidi Force Commander Warns PKK and Shi’ite Militias Strive to Divide Sinjar – He urges both forces to leave the area


Basnews English –  26/05/2017 -ERBIL— General Commander of Ezidkhan Force on Thursday warned the Kurdistan Workers’ Party (PKK) and the Shi’ite Hashd al-Shaabi paramilitaries to leave Sinjar and the rest of the Kurdish Yezidi areas or else the people of these areas will stand against them.

During an interview with BasNews, Haidar Shasho said the PKK and Hashd forces pose a threat against the residents of Sinjar because “as we see they are struggling to divide the area into three separate parts.”Shasho explained that the PKK has established many checkpoints in Khanasor and regards it as an area of its own, independent of Sinjar.If like the PKK, Hashd forces also set up checkpoints in the rest of Yezidi areas of Sinjar as Tal Banat, Tal Qasab, Kocho, Gir Uzer, and Siba Sheikh Khidir, “then another massacre against Sinjar will take place.”

Ezidkhan commander stated they thank any parties which have assisted in liberating Sinjar and those who will help in taking back the rest of the Yezidi populated area but at the same time he urged them to leave after controlling the area.He noted “Hashd forces should hand over the entire Sinjar area to the people of Sinjar because if they stay long and the PKK refuses to leave the area, then the people of Sinjar will be obliged to stand against them.””People of Sinjar want to protect their areas by themselves… Our people need peace and stability.”Shasho in particular demanded the PKK to end its “troublemaking” in the area, declaring “We oppose the PKK’s attempts to make Sinjar its second Qandil [PKK’s stronghold mount on Iran-Iraq-Turkey’s common borders].”

The Ezidkhan force, which has enrolled hundreds of Yezidi women and men, is to be incorporated as an official rank in the Kurdistan Region’s Peshmerga forces, though the force is yet to be armed by the Ministry of the Peshmerga Affairs, according to Shasho. The Yezidi commander thought Kurdistan Region’s due referendum on independence from Iraq should also be held in Sinjar, as a Kurdish area, so that the people of the area, themselves, choose their own destiny. He described the referendum as “the key to resolve all the issues in Sinjar,” while he called on the Kurdistan Regional Government (KRG) to reconstruct Yezidis’ war-torn areas.