Bombs landing in Iraqi Kurdistan on November 14, 2022

Iran’s Shelling Of Iraqi Kurdistan Sparks Global Outcry

Monday, 11/14/2022

Iran’s Revolutionary Guard’s latest round of shelling of Iraqi Kurdistan region has drawn condemnation by Western countries as well as the Iraqi government.

In a Monday phone call with his Iranian counterpart Hossein Amir-Abdollahian, Iraqi Foreign Minister Fuad Hussein decried the attacks as a violation of Iraq's sovereignty, saying that the continuation of such unilateral measures is "dangerous".

Moreover, Kurdistan Region Prime Minister Masrour Barzani also condemned the “violations” of Iraq and its Kurdish region’s sovereignty, following IRGC’s attacks on the headquarters of Iranian-Kurdish groups, some of which are armed.

According to Iran International’s correspondent, the RGC targeted the main base of the Democratic Party of Iranian Kurdistan (PDKI) in capital Erbil and Komala in Sulaymaniyah with drones and missiles.

The PDKI said a senior party member and a Peshmerga militiaman were killed and several other Peshmerga forces injured in the Monday attacks.

The Canadian Embassy in Iraq, the US Consulate General in Erbil, the UN Assistance Mission for Iraq (UNAMI) and the German Consulate General in Erbil have so far condemned the renewed attacks on the Kurdistan Region.

The German Consulate-General in Erbil said that Berlin urges Iran to respect the territorial integrity and sovereignty of Iraq. “The attacks have to stop immediately,” it said.

Since the current wave of protests began in Iran following the death in custody of young Iranian Kurdish woman Mahsa (Jina) Amini, the Islamic Republic has intensified its attacks on Kurdish dissident groups based in Iraqi Kurdistan, apparently aimed at intimidating the Kurds. In addition to PDKI and Komala, IRGC launched artillery and suicide drone attacks against positions of other Kurdish groups opposed to the Islamic Republic such as Parti Azadi Kurdistan, aka PAK (Kurdistan Freedom Party).

The US also strongly condemned Iran’s “violations of Iraqi sovereignty”, calling on the Islamic Republic to stop attacking its neighbor and the people of Iraq. “We stand with the Iraqi government’s leaders in Baghdad and the Iraqi Kurdistan region,” the Consulate General in Erbil said on its twitter account.

“Iraq should not be used as an arena to settle scores and its territorial integrity must be respected,” UN Assistance Mission for Iraq said, adding that “Dialogue between Iraq and Iran over mutual security concerns is the only way forward.”

Amini was from the Kurdish town of Saqqez and was arrested and beaten during a visit to Tehran. After her death in hospital, her hometown and other Kurdish cities were the first to launch antigovernment protests.

Late in October, the Iranian Army's Ground Force also launched a three-day war game around the northwestern town of Piranshahr in West Azarbaijan province bordering Iraqi Kurdistan.

Iran’s last barrage of missile and drone strikes against the groups in September led to the death of 14 people, including women and children, and wounding of 58 other people near Erbil and Sulaymaniyah.

The Islamic Republic calls the Kurdish armed groups in the western provinces of Iran, "terrorist groups" or "anti-revolutionary" but these groups say that the goal of their armed campaign is "defending the rights of the Kurds".

Generally, the Kurdish parties − including Komala and the KDPI − favor Kurdish autonomy within a federal Iran.

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