Hundreds of residents in Sulaymaniyah, Kurdistan Region of Iraq (KRI), on Sunday took the streets to protest Turkey’s Friday attack on the city’s international airport.
The rally started at the city centre with raised KRI flags. Some were holding banners that read, “Sulaymaniyah will not accept these terrorist assaults”.
The protesters also called on the international community to take a firmer stance against Ankara’s attacks on Kurdish targets.
Friday’s attack came after Turkey closed its airspace last week to flights to and from Sulaymaniyah, citing increased Kurdistan Workers Party (PKK) activity and “infiltration” into the airport.
Syrian Democratic Forces (SDF) Commander-in-chief, Mazloum Abdi, was at the airport when Turkey attacked, SDF confirmed.
Last month nine SDF fighters died enroute to Sulaymaniyah in two helicopter crashes.
On Friday the convoy targeted by Turkish drones included US military personnel.
Turkey continuously launches operations against PKK bases in northern Iraq and views the SDF as a PKK affiliate.
The Turkish government have begun a man hunt for Abdi ahead of the country’s 14 May elections, in the hope that the assassination of the Kurdish commander will boost voter support at home, according to Kurdish journalist Ahmet Dicle.