Dec 26, 2012

Iraqi Turkmen: Potential Casualties Of Iraqi Tensions

Amidst the tensions between Iraq and Kurdistan, it is feared that violence could spread to the Turkmen region, resulting in unforeseen casualties from a group that was not initially part of the conflict.

Below is an article published by Turkish Weekly:

Iraqi Turkmen Front Chairman (ITF) and Kirkuk Deputy Ersad Salihi has said that the tension between Iraqi Prime Minister Nouri al-Maliki's army units and the Kurdish forces continues, so from a possible conflict between them mainly Iraqi Turkmens would be harmed.

Salihi assessed challenges that Turkmens face lately in Iraq and told AA that they were able to see the rising violence towards Turkmens lately.

He supported, "Some hold onto conspiracy theories in the Turkmen region."

Salihi said, "Whoever those are, they are taking serious steps in order to achieve their argument."

Kirkuk MP Salihi stated that the central government in Baghdad does not assist them sufficiently regarding the solution of the problem. Furthermore, Salihi said that as well as the army units of PM al-Maliki were settled in Kirkuk's Turkmen region, Peshmerga forces are deployed in north of the city too.

From a possible conflict, mainly Turkmens will be affected says Salihi and added: "Kirkuk became a control point of both sides at the moment. Even a small conflict will affect Turkmens. There is a risky conflict platform."

Turkmens are the third largest ethnic group in Iraq and they mainly reside in north of Iraq.