The Kurdish leadership of northern Iraq has accused the Iraqi federal government of deploying a large amount of troops and military hardware along the border of the semi-autonomous region.
In a statement made by the Kurdistan Region Security Council (KRSC), “In the last 48 hours, Iraq has continued to deploy tanks and artillery, as well as American equipment, including Humvees and Armored Personnel Carriers,”.
The KRSC has called these deployments of Iraqi troops and allied militias “dangerous”.
The statement also said that Iraq has shown no intentions to de-escalate violence against the people of the Kurdistan region. This comes after the Iraqi military invaded and seized the province of Kirkuk after intense fighting with Kurdish Peshmerga troops.
The Iraqi army had seized control of Kirkuk previously during a Kurdish independence referendum on September the 25th, which was met with much controversy.
The statement went on to add that Iraq must cease all military aggression and withdraw from any and all seized territories, as well as commit itself to unconditional dialogue to settle disputes via peaceful means.
It seems unlikely, however, that the Iraqi government will stop the aggression against Kurdistan as just on Friday, October 20, Iraqi troops as well as a Shiite militia backed by Iran, launched an offensive against the town of Altun Kopri with intense fighting.
More details to follow. Image of Iraqi troops during an exercise from ABC News.