The Sinjar region of Nineveh Governorate in northern Iraq is witnessing tension and confrontations between an Iraqi army force and a local militia revolving in the orbit of the Kurdistan Workers Party (PKK), called the “Sinjar Resistance Units”.
The confrontations led to deaths between the two sides and the displacement of about 4 thousand Yazidis to the Kurdistan region.
The Sinjar region is the historical home of the Yazidi minority, and the sprawling Sinjar Mountain was and remains the last refuge and fortress for this Kurdish religious minority, which has been subjected to dozens of massacres and exterminations over the centuries, the latest of which was the attack of the so-called “Islamic State” on the region in 2014, where thousands of men were killed. Thousands of children and women were taken captive and kidnapped by ISIS militants, and the fate of about 3,000 women is still unknown.
When the militants of the Islamic State invaded the Sinjar region, units of the Peshmerga of the Kurdistan Regional Government were stationed in the area, but they withdrew from the area without any confrontation with the militants of the organization.
The people of the area became at the mercy of the organization, so tens of thousands of them fled to Mount Sinjar and took refuge there.
Members of the Kurdistan Workers Party (PKK) and the Kurdish People’s Protection Units (YPG) in Syria opened a safe corridor for the people of the region to escape from the face of the organization, and tens of thousands of them sought refuge in Syria and then returned to the Kurdistan region, where special camps were set up for them.
The area remained under the control of the Islamic State, with the exception of Mount Sinjar, which the organization did not attempt to storm due to the difficulty of the mission from a military point of view and because of the US air strikes against the organization’s positions in the vicinity of the mountain. The control of the city of Sinjar was shared between the Islamic State and the Kurdistan Workers’ Party (PKK).
In 2015, the area was liberated from the grip of the organization, but the city, cities and towns that were in the hands of the organization were severely destroyed by the air strikes launched by the international coalition aircraft, in preparation for the entry of the Peshmerga to it.
After the expulsion of ISIS militants from the Sinjar region, the PKK fighters and the Sinjar Resistance Units militia close to the party took control of the region and formed a special administration for the region.
The Kurdistan Regional Government was not allowed to administer the region (the Democratic Party appointed engineer Mahma Khalil to the position of mayor in Sinjar district, but he did not practice his work from there), which deprived the region of stability and reconstruction.
This did not encourage the people of the region to return to their villages and cities from the displacement camps in Dohuk Governorate, which has been hosting about 200,000 Yazidis displaced since 2014.
In 2017, the Peshmerga forces stationed in the region withdrew after military confrontations with the Iraqi army, following the independence referendum of Kurdistan, and many of the disputed areas stipulated in Article 140 of the Iraqi constitution came out of the control of the Peshmerga forces, including the areas of Sinjar and Kirkuk.
The control of the region is shared by a number of groups and organizations with different loyalties. In addition to the Sinjar Resistance Units and the Ezidi Khan Protection Forces, there are many factions affiliated with the Popular Mobilization, including a number of factions close to Iran, such as Asa’ib Ahl al-Haq.
The Iraqi government had given the Sinjar and Ezidikhan resistance forces the choice between joining the Iraqi army or the popular mobilization in late 2020, so it chose the mobilization and the 80th regiment was formed in the popular mobilization forces from the Yezidi component.
This step came after the Kurdistan Regional Government and the central government reached an agreement in late 2020 under the auspices of the United Nations to normalize the situation in Sinjar through the Iraqi police control of the area and the removal of other armed groups from it, to create conditions for the return of the people of the region to their villages and cities, but the agreement did not enter into force until right Now.
Although Sinjar Resistance Forces officials confirmed that the PKK had left the area in 2018, Turkey continued to launch raids under the pretext of the continued presence of the party’s elements, accusing the Sinjar Resistance Units of being affiliated with it, and that the party was transporting weapons and personnel across the region from Syria to its bases in Iraqi Kurdistan.
Turkish planes killed a number of leaders of these forces, such as the commander of the 80th Regiment, Saeed Hassan Saeed, in a drone attack in August 2021.
The Yazidi forces affiliated with the Popular Mobilization Brigade accuse the Iraqi Prime Minister, Mustafa Al-Kazemi, and the Kurdistan Democratic Party, in coordinating with the Turkish government in the attack on its forces.
The Turkish base in Zlikan in northern Iraq has been subjected to repeated missile attacks in recent months, while voices have been raised within the popular crowd condemning the recent Turkish military operation inside Iraq.
And a report issued by the US Department of Defense recently stated that there is “coordination” between the PKK and factions of the Popular Mobilization in targeting Turkish military bases in Iraq.
A cautious calm prevails in Sinjar after the Iraqi forces imposed their control over the area.
“Reader. Infuriatingly humble travel enthusiast. Extreme food scholar. Writer. Communicator.”
The eligibility of the developed social security, Al-Qi’dah 1444, and the eligibility query link
Congress passes the law to raise the debt ceiling and avoid default
Gul Jamal series, episode 8, Gülcemal, with all its details, with subtitles on the Turkish FOX channel