The French Communist Party (PCF) issued a press statement that condemned Turkey’s ongoing campaign in northern Iraq. It also announced that a delegation led by the its national secretary, Pierre Laurent, will visit Erbil (Hewler) next week.
The PCF stated that the Turkish army had launched a new offensive in northern Iraq “against the Kurds” since the end of April 2021. “The ground and air operations against the fighters who confronted the Islamic State involve lethal artillery and killer drones,” said Pascal Torre, deputy head of the international desk of the PCF, in charge of the Maghreb and the Middle East region.
Torre stated that the Turkish air force is “engaged in relentless bombing of civilian populations with the suspicion of chemical weapons use. Turkey also relies on a network of military bases established for nearly 25 years on Iraqi territory.”
Ankara has a triple objective, Torre added: “To eradicate the Kurdish presence and to increase its annexationist presence from the refugee camp of Makhmur to Mosul. Moreover, [President Recep Tayyip] Erdoğan does not hide his will to uproot from Sinjar the Kurdistan Workers’ Party (PKK), the very ones who saved the Yezidis from Daesh’s genocide.
“Erdoğan wants to seize the opportunity of the NATO summit on 14 June to obtain the Organisation’s approval to carry out a major offensive.
“What will France’s attitude be? Will it abandon the fighters for freedom and democracy and capitulate to the liberticidal and expansionist policies of R.T. Erdogan? Will it take the risk of aggravating an explosive situation in the face of strong opposition from the Iraqi government and Tehran?”
Torre appealed to the President of the French Republic and his Minister of Foreign Affairs to “remove ambiguities, express firm opposition to the opening of a new front by Turkey, after those of Syria, Libya and the Eastern Mediterranean, and consider that the Kurds, in their diversity, constitute one of the main forces for peace in the region.”
To express the full solidarity of the French communists, Torre announced that a delegation of the PCF – led by Pierre Laurent – will go next week to Erbil (Hewler) at the invitation of the Kurdistan National Congress (KNC).