Pres­i­dent Barzani: Kur­dis­tani iden­tity of Kirkuk must be es­tab­lished

On a visit to the Pesh­merga front­lines in Kirkuk on Wed­nes­day, the Kur­dish Pres­i­dent Ma­soud Barzani said that the Kur­dis­tani iden­tity of Kirkuk must be es­tab­lished and the city kept out of en­emy hands.

The Kurdish Globe - - NEWS -

Barzani said that in the end it is up to the peo­ple of Kirkuk to de­cide the fate of the Province.

“The Pesh­merga have paid with blood for this land and we have lost great men,” said Barzani. “But de­spite that, we will still not im­pose on peo­ple any par­tic­u­lar form of ad­min­is­tra­tion and it is up to them to de- cide their fu­ture.”

Af­ter a visit to the front­lines south of the city where Kur­dish forces have been bat­tling Is­lamic State (IS) ter­ror­ists since last year, Barzani met with Kirkuk Gover­nor as well as a num­ber of Pesh­merga com­man­ders.

“We have to turn to the will of the peo­ple of this re­gion,” said the Kur­dish Pres­i­dent. “And at the same time the eth­nic and re­li­gious groups of Kirkuk must be treated with ut­most re­spect.”

“But the Kur­dis­tani iden­tity of Kirkuk has to be, in the mean­time, es­tab­lished,” he added.

Barzani high­lighted the unity of the Kur­dish Pesh­merga forces in their fight against IS across a stretch of land of more than 1,000 KM long.

“The blood of our Pesh­merga in the de­fense trenches is the ba­sis of our peo­ple’s unity and it should be a guide to our politi­cians for more unity and brother­hood,” said Barzani.

Barzani’s visit to Kirkuk came just days af­ter a ma­jor bat­tle south of the city where the Pesh­merga re­pelled a ma­jor IS at­tack, killing dozens of ter­ror­ists and re­cap­tur­ing sev­eral vil­lages.

Kur­dis­tan Re­gion Pres­i­dent, Ma­soud Barzani met with Kirkuk Gover­nor and Pesh­merge Com­man­ders

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