Iraqi, Kurdish forces in standoff, weeks after Kurdish vote for independence


HARI SREENIVASAN: The need of the Kurds alongside Iraq’s northern border to manipulate themselves is receiving extra resistance from Iraq’s central executive. Iraqi military forces are tough Kurdish troops withdraw from oil fields and army bases round Kirkuk, a town in the Kurdistan area that voted for independence final month. Kirkuk additionally has 10% of Iraq’s identified oil reserves. Washington Post’s Loveday Morris is in Baghdad overlaying this standoff joins me now by way of Skype. First of all of the importance of this. Why is it so vital?

LOVEDAY MORRIS: There’s been an established battle between Baghdad and Kurdistan over those disputed territories. Most important of which is Kirkuk as a result of the oil reserves. But the referendum final month has in point of fact sharpened those disputes as a result of you’ve Baghdad opposing independence and so it looks like they’ve to restate its territorial claims those spaces. So that’s why we’re seeing a large number of pressure at this time.

HARI SREENIVASAN: And simply to present folks a bit of little bit of a short lived timeline – Iraqi forces keep watch over this house for some time after which in June ISIS took over the realm and now it’s more or less again in Kurdish arms?

LOVEDAY MORRIS: Right. So in June 2014 Iraq misplaced keep watch over of a large number of the spaces and now we have this large cave in in the face of an ISIS offensive. Over 100,000 infantrymen fled and Kurdish forces moved in a few of these spaces – a few of them possibly took from ISIS and others simply moved into into the vacuum. And so Iraqi forces had been in those spaces since June 2014. And that’s their major call for that they go back to the spaces.

HARI SREENIVASAN: What’s the chance that this standoff at this time turns violent? Into some kind of a civil conflict?

LOVEDAY MORRIS:: I feel at this level each side don’t need violence. Al-Abadi, the high minister, is in point of fact seeking to defuse the location via announcing there’s going to be no army assault. But on the identical time there may be this buildup of forces in order that I feel they’re seeking to, in some way, intimidate the Kurds to withdraw from some spaces however they don’t wish to see a struggle consistent with say. But in this in point of fact traumatic scenario there generally is a small spark and issues can flip violent moderately simply.


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