The Kurdistan Democratic Party (KDP) denied allegations that military forces affiliated with the party changed their uniforms and joined Turkish troops during operations against Kurdish insurgents in Northern Iraq, Rudaw news website reported on Thursday.
KDP Spokesman Mahmud Muhammed said the party wasn’t taking sides in the conflicts between the Turkish Armed Forces and the Kurdistan Workers’ Party, an outlawed group that has been fighting for Kurdish autonomy in Turkey for four decades.
Muhammed said PKK was unable to fight, and was “constantly running away.”
“PKK should abandon its baseless allegations,” the spokesman continued, referring to the group accusing the KDP of paving the way for a Turkish assault against PKK fighters.
Turkey launched air and land operations against PKK positions in Northern Iraq in the summer of 2020, and the major military campaign now continues in the vicinity of Mount Gara.
The Kurdistan Communities Union (KCK), an umbrella organisation for Kurdish political factions and groups, blamed the KDP in a statement it issued. The statement read:
“Shortly after the Turkish Minister of War and the Turkish Chief of General Staff held talks with the Iraqi government in Baghdad and the Southern Kurdistan government in Hewlêr (Erbil), the Turkish invading army launched an attack on the Gare region in the Medya Defense Zones. On the morning of Feb. 10, Turkish troops were dropped in many places after hours of airstrikes.”
Turkey considers PKK to be a terrorist organisation. Following four decades of fighting and several failed attempts at reconciliation, including a recent 2.5-year process between 2013 and 2015, the Turkish government has made advances in recent years against the group, owing partially to domestically-developed armed drone technology, i.e. the Bayraktar drones.