Kurdish War: Civil War In Northern Iraq


November 29, 2007: Iraqi Kurds are reporting that PKK leaders in Iraq are increasingly afraid of arrest or capture. Specifically, the PKK commanders believe that Turkish forces are cooperating with some Iraqi Kurd organizations. Here's the scenario: If the Turks move on PKK bases or camps, the Iraqi Kurds and the PKK leaders attempt to sneak away, the Iraqi Kurds will detain them. One report cropped up that PKK fighters have already broken up into smaller groups and are leaving bases in northern Iraq for safe-haven in southern Iraq. Some are allegedly moving into camps close to the Iraq-Iran border. It looks like the PKK are not anticipating a Turkish strike as much as they fear Iraqi police or military cordons. There is also another possibility, that these reports are Iraqi "spin." The Iraqis want to convince the Turks that they are attempting to control the PKK. However, the "spin scenario" isn't very likely. The Turks have been quite willing to accuse the Iraqi government of failing to act – and at the moment they aren't doing that. Turkey has received promises from Iraqi senior officials (including Iraqi Kurdish leaders) that they will act to stop the PKK from launching attacks into Turkey.

November 27, 2007: The Turkish Army has begun a new psychological warfare campaign. Turkish aircraft are "leafleting" – they are dropping propaganda leaflets on PKK base areas in northern Iraq. The leaflets promise any PKK fighters who return to Turkey and surrender that they will "be welcomed" and treated decently.

November 26, 2007: The anti-Iran Kurdish rebel group, the Kurdistan Free Life Party (the acronym is PJAK, or sometimes PEJAK), accused the Iraqi Kurdish regional government of "blockading" (cordoning) routes into the Khandil Mountains. The PJAK is an ally of the PKK (more accurately, it's the PKK operating in Iranian Kurdistan). A PJAK spokesman demanded that the Iraqi government "reopen all roads" into the mountain region. Another PJAK statement essentially accused the Iraqi Kurdish government of being "anti-Kurd" and "anti-nationalist" (ie, anti-Kurd nationalist). These are heavy duty accusations on the part of PJAK. They are another indication that the Iraqis are taking some actions to limit PKK (and PJAK) movement within Iraq.


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