Turkey establishes new bases in southern Kurdistan

Turkey continues to expand its military presence in the Kurdistan region of Iraq. According to media reports, further bases have been established in the immediate vicinity of guerrilla areas.

Turkey is reportedly establishing more military bases in southern Kurdistan (the Kurdistan Region of Iraq). According to a RojNews report based on local media, bases were established two days ago in the mountains of Gelî, Amêdî and Hekarî as well as in Çarçela. This brings the Turkish army closer to the Medya Defence Zones controlled by the PKK guerrillas.

Military units of the South Kurdistan’s ruling party, KDP (Kurdistan Democratic Party), act together with the Turkish army. An unnamed source in the Peshmerga ministry is said to have stated that the purpose of the new bases is to monitor the movements of the guerrillas and to increase military pressure.

The Turkish state has increased its military presence in southern Kurdistan more than ever in recent years and maintains dozens of bases from which helicopters and drones take off on attack flights. Thousands of soldiers are stationed in the Kurdistan Region of Iraq. In addition, there are locations of the Turkish intelligence service (MIT) and a broad network of agents.

There are up to ten military bases in the vicinity of Sheladize alone. The town is located thirty kilometres away from the town of Amadiya in Duhok governorate. A large part of the villages in this area is now empty due to continued Turkish attacks, and entry is forbidden. In April, two villagers were killed by a Turkish airstrike while collecting herbs. In early 2019, there was an uprising in the town against the Turkish occupation forces, and dozens of people were arrested.

The KDP and the government of Southern Kurdistan show no reaction against the military occupation by Turkey. The Iraqi government in Baghdad expresses at most verbal reactions.