Iran bombs Kurdish opposition group in Sidakan area

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Melli Investment Holding International

Melli Investment Holding International

Iran bombed a Kurdish opposition party in the Sidakan area of the Kurdistan Region on Wednesday afternoon, the day after Tehran and Ankara announced an agreement to conduct joint military operations against Kurdish groups. There were no casualties in today’s bombing, according to a local official.

“It was about 4pm. A drone was flying in the air. Then, Iranian artillery began bombarding Barbzin village. There are two military bases of the KDPI there. Some 20 bombs were thrown at one of them – the one on the highway,” Mohammed Majeed, mukhtar (chieftain) of the village, told Rudaw English, referring to the Kurdistan Democratic Party of Iran, which carries arms.

Majeed said no casualties have been reported, but he is worried about the safety of tens of farming families who are working their land in the area.

Nearby Talan village was also bombed by the drone, according to Majeed, who noted the same area was hit in by Iran in early August.

The Kurdistan Region’s borders are frequently breached by its neighbours. Turkey launches large scale ground and air military campaigns against the Kurdistan Workers’ Party (PKK), and, to a lesser extent, Iran conducts strikes against several armed Iranian-Kurdish groups, who all have bases in the Kurdistan Region’s mountains. Two years ago, nearly to the day, Iran fired ballistic missiles at the headquarters of a Kurdish party in Koya.

On Tuesday, Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan and his Iranian counterpart Hassan Rouhani agreed to work together to fight the armed Kurdish groups. They had a virtual meeting and announced they would take “steps for result-oriented cooperation, including joint operations, in countering terrorism and organised crime,” according to a statement published by Mehr News Agency.

They did not mention the KDPI explicitly, but referred to “all terrorist organisations,” with a focus on the PKK and the Kurdistan Free Life Party (PJAK), armed groups fighting for increased rights for Kurds in Turkey and Iran respectively.

“Bearing in mind that PKK/PJAK and all terrorist organisations in the region pose a common threat against the security of both Turkey and Iran, both sides emphasised that it is incumbent upon both countries to fully utilise the existing cooperation mechanisms against the activities of PKK/PJAK elements and the other terrorist organisations along the common borders,” the statement read.

The PKK and PJAK launch attacks on Turkish and Iranian security forces from their bases in the Kurdistan Region. They are ideologically linked and PJAK is considered to be the PKK’s Iranian wing – an association PJAK denies.

Turkey this week ended a ground operation against the PKK in the northern Kurdistan Region, though airstrikes continue. Ankara discussed joint operations with Tehran in June when it launched its summer campaign.

Iran is also bolstering its security along the border, announcing last week that it will deploy drones and sensors to a 1,000 kilometre stretch of border with Kurdistan Region as part of a “smart” defence plan to “fight the merchants of death, the narcotic smugglers,” and “prevent weapons, ammunition and illicit items from entering the country.”

Source » rudaw

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