®
Home - Advertise - About - E-mail

 Daily Online News - Independent daily Newspaper  Add URL | Link to us

 Flights to Kurdistan

 Ekurd.net RSS Feed News Archive Today in the History  

Download

 Kurdish Music Box



IKB Travel & Tours Ltd. Youshouldtravel.com
Direct Flights from London to Sulaimaniyah, Kurdistan-Iraq

 


 

Custom Search over 70,000 pages on Ekurd.net

 

 Iraq's Kurdistan Islamic Union (KIU) opposition party office attacked and set on fire in Zakho

 News   
  Kurd Net does not take credit for and is not responsible for the content of news information on this page

 


Iraq's Kurdistan Islamic Union (KIU) opposition party office attacked and set on fire in Zakho  3.12.2011  
By ekurd.net staff writers - update 4







Crowds rampage in Iraqi Kurdish city after sermons

December 3, 2011


ZAKHO, Kurdistan region 'Iraq', — Rioters attacked liquor stores, a massage parlour and hotels after being stirred up by fiery sermons in a predominantly Kurdish city in Iraqi Kurdistan, police officials said Saturday. Pro-Kurdish government KRG crowds then attacked opposition Islamist party offices in retaliation, they said.

A group of rioters attacked the local headquarters of the Kurdistan Islamic Union (KIU) – an opposition political party represented in the Kurdistan Parliament in Duhok province of Iraqi Kurdistan on Friday and set several buildings on fire.

Rudaw’s reporter in Zakho said the political offices of the Islamic Union, the youth and media centers in Duhok, Zakho and Simel were attacked by mobs of angry protesters.

The official media of the Islamic Union said Friday evening that unknown men had fired over their main office in the capital Erbil.

In an official statement the Islamic Union condemned the attacks.

Thirty people including 20 policemen were reported injured in the rampage, which followed Friday midday prayers in the town of Zakho. Zakho lies within the territory controlled by Iraq's Kurdistan Regional Government (KRG).  

Some 30 liquor stores, four hotels, and a massage parlour in and around the city near the Turkish border were ransacked, set on fire or otherwise damaged, they said.

A video posted on YouTube (click to view), shows the assault against Christian and Kurdish liquor shops and properties.

“We have witnessed attacks on our 13th and 3rd branches as well as our Spede TV and radio stations in Simel by supporters of a party that is in charge of the area,” read the statement. “The attacks were irresponsible and far from all moral basis.”

Prior to the attack hundreds of local people took part in a demonstration following Friday prayers, culminating in sporadic attacks on local off-licenses and massage parlours.

Unlike the ruling parties the KIU does not have a private militia and it has always advocated a peaceful solution to the problems facing the region. Unlike the ruling parties it does not have a private militia and it has always advocated a peaceful solution to the problems facing the region.

The head of Kurdistan Islamic Union Center in Dohuk has captured with some active members of the center, the KIU website on Saturday.

Local Christian sources interviewed by AsiaNews -          

The office of the 13th branch of the Islamic Union of Kurdistan in Zakho. Photo: NRT TV


The assault against Christian and Kurdish liquor shops and properties in Zakho, Kurdistan region of Iraq. December 2, 2011. Photo: ekurd.net/youTube


The assault against Christian and Kurdish liquor shops and properties in Zakho, Kurdistan region of Iraq. December 2, 2011. Photo: ekurd.net/youTube

anonymous for security reasons - were involved in the raid confirm that "hundreds of people, especially young people" destroyed "at least 13 liquor shops, but the number could reach 30. Witnesses added that "the police did not react" and it is likely that "the assault was pre-planned." The extremist crowd, that carried out the attack in Zakho, then headed for Sumaili - town 15 km from Duhok, the third largest Kurdish city - where once again exercises owned by Christians and Yazidis were targeted.

In Sumaili, said the source, there are at least 200 Christian families who are now terrified. The violence continued in the Christian village of Shiuz, where 180 families live, and " the Kurdish police intervened to restore calm only two hours later ". "The extremist crowd - he adds - chanted jihad, or holy war, and anti-Christian slogans." AsiaNews reported.

While this story has been covered by all the opposition TV stations, it has been ignored by the TV stations of the two ruling parties of Barzani's KDP and Talabani's PUK.

Some commentators believe Friday's protest in Zhako was not really about religion but more a reflection of underlying popular discontent with the KRG. Yesterday there was a protest in Erbil,
www.ekurd.net the KRG capital, about poor public services.

Islamic Union activist Salahudden Babekir blamed the attacks on his party on activists of the ruling Kurdistan Democratic Party KDP, and denied that his group had any role in Friday's violence.

Ahmed Mira, editor of Lvin Press, told Speeda TV that the situation shows that the authorities are still influenced by a culture of violence.

Islamists have become more active recently in Kurdistan as the secular-leaning KDP and its partner in government and sometime-rival, the Patriotic Union of Kurdistan, have become preoccupied with internal conflicts.

The Association of Kurdish Muslim scholars sent a letter to KRG a copy of which was received by ekurd.net on Saturday, "We had sought prior permission to hold the demonstration from concerned authorities. We had earlier stated and submitted our demands to Kurdistan Regional Parliament and his Excellency President Massoud Barzani" the statement said. "We have overtly called on KRG to put a ban on sale of alcoholic beverages and its illegal consumption in our religious institutions. Our universities have been turned into fornication houses."

The Kurdistan government's interior ministry issued a statement late Friday condemning the violence, describing them as an attempt to inflame the situation in the northern self-rule enclave, and promised to bring those involved to justice. It called on citizens to show self-restraint and to solve their problems through dialogue.

“We condemn all violent acts and all sides must keep calm,” the statement read. “We will not allow the rule of law to be breeched by anyone for any reasons.”

It is said that the attacks on the offices of the Islamic Union were in retaliation to the clerics who instigated people against the liquor store and massage parlors. The clerics were believed to be members of the Islamic Union of Kurdistan—one of the main opposition groups of the Kurdistan Region.

But the Islamic Union denied any connections with the violent incidents in Zakho.

A statement by the party read, “The Islamic Union does not have any preachers in that city (Zakho) to justify the violence,”

In a series of similar incidents in 2005, the office of the Islamic Union in Duhok was stormed by protesters. The building was set on fire and several staff members were killed.

We have to ask why there seems to be a pattern of burning the offices of opposition parties in KDP-controlled towns.

Sources: AP | Rudaw | AsiaNews | KurdistanTribune | KIU | Agencies

Copyright © 2011 ekurd.net. All rights reserved   

Top

  Kurd Net does not take credit for and is not responsible for the content of news information on this page

 
 

Copyright © 1998-2014 Kurd Net® . All rights reserved. Ekurd.net
All documents and images on this website are copyrighted and may not be used without the express
permission of the copyright holder.