Fighting between ISIS and Peshmarga intensifies
During the past few days the exchange of fire between Kurdistan Region Peshmarga Forces and the Islamic State of Iraq and Syria (ISIS) fighters has intensified, mainly in the areas where Shabak Kurds inhabit.
Till now ISIS fighters have launched attacks on many Shabak Kurdish villages in Mosul Province and took control over 11 of them.
The Shiite inhabitants of these villages have fled, while the Sunnis have stayed.
There are 56 Shabak villages around Mosul where Shiite and Sunni Shabak Kurds dwell. Currently 11 of these villages are under the control of ISIS and the remaining 45 villages are controlled by Peshmarga Forces.
Villages of Gogjeli, Qaratapa, Tubraq Bchik, Tubraq Gawra, Jiliwakhan, Shahrazad, Lak, Qarashoor, Omarkan, Twanja and Shimisyak are under the control of ISIS.
According to an Anadolu News Agency report, during these days around 120 Shiite residents of these areas have been kidnapped.
“It has been 15 days since we fled from Gogjeli Village,” Hussein Mohammed, a Shiite Shabak resident of Gogjeli said. “We came to Tobzawa in Mosul and we live in the home of a villager here. It was 12 midnight when all the roads of Gogjeli were blocked, and we escaped across the deserts of Mosul.”
According to Mohammed, ISIS fighters only kill Shiite Shabaks while the Sunni Shabaks still live in their homes. Hence he calls for Peshmargas to liberate their villages so that they can return home.
Hashim Mahdi, a Shabak Kurd and head of the Kurdistan Democratic Party (KDP) office in Tobzawa Village, said that they are Kurds and all the people of these villages speak the Macho Kurdish dialect.
“We want our area to be reattached to Kurdistan Region and we will be happily participating in the referendum,” Mahdi says.
Regarding the sectarian difference among the Shabak Kurds, Mahdi said: “ISIS may differentiate between Shiite Shabaks and Sunni Shabaks, but we don’t differentiate between ourselves and we are all mixed.”
Mahdi added that there are 180 Shiite Shabak families who have fled to Mahdi’s village and live with the village’s original Sunni Shabak inhabitants without a problem.
Shabak Kurds in Iraq and Kurdistan Region are all Muslims, some of them Sunnis, while the majority is Shiites.
The majority of the Shabaks are from the Kurdish tribes scattered around Bardarash near Akre (Gorannshin area), Kirkuk, Garmian and Erbil areas, including Zangana, Bajalan, Rozhbayani, Dawda, Lak, Omarbel and Zirari.
Their dialect is mainy Gorani Kudish dialect with an impact of Badini dialect, Arabic and Turkish, due to their neighborhood with the Badinan area as well as the Arab and Turkoman tribes of Mosul.