YBS/YJS fighters in Sinjar in 2016 / Twitter
The Sinjar Resistance Units (YBŞ) and Sinjar Women’s Units (YBŞ) have issued a written statement on the Mosul Operation.
In the joint statement both armed groups said, “The question of which forces will participate in Mosul Operation has widely been debated recently. As the Sinjar Defence Units, we have been fighting against ISIS effectively for more than two years. Shengal is an important residential area in Mosul province, and our forces are the main units that defend it. Therefore, the Mosul operation and the governance of the city after its liberation are of utmost importance to us.”
In its statement, the YBŞ/YJŞ recalled that the occupation of Shengal and massacre of its civilians was orchestrated from Mosul, and thousands of captive Yazidis (Ezidi) were still in Mosul and captive to Islamic State. The group stated that it would not accept any system that does not acknowledge the will, culture and faith of Yazidi people, who would be the most persecuted people if the new system in Mosul did not create an environment of coexistence among different religious and ethnic groups. "Mosul’s future is of great concern to us and the presence of the Turkish state in Mosul could be the sign of future massacres to come," the statement read.
The YBŞ/YJŞ also noted that 65 of the 74 massacres that they had faced in history had been carried out by the Ottoman Empire and the Turkish state, and that the Yazidi people and their defence forces would not allow another Turkish occupation of the region.
"We are acknowledged and accepted by the central government in Iraq, and we are calling upon the Iraqi government to make its stance clear to all parties and officially invite us to join the Mosul operation."
Airstrikes by the anti-ISIS coalition on Mosul began today with the land operation expected to begin in the coming days.
The list of which groups and national armies will participate in the operation has been one of contention, with the Turkish military insisting on taking part in the operation much to the annoyance of the Iraqi government. Recent statementss and developments suggest Turkey, which has forces in Bashiqa town, just outside Mosul, will not participate in the seizure of the city. According to local sources however Turkey recently sent 1,200 reinforcements to Bashiqa. Turkey President Erdogan has warned that Turkey has, 'Plans B and C for Mosul,' if they are not allowed to take part.
The Popular Mobilisation Units (PMU) groups, which will be leading the operation alongside the Iraqi military and are made up of mostly Shiites but also Sunnis, Christians and other ethnic and religious groups.
Meanwhile Kurdistan Regional Government President Massoud Barzani has released a statement saying, "Baghdad and Irbil (the capital of Iraqi Kurdistan) have also agreed to establish a joint higher political committee whose task would be to supervise the affairs of Mosul after the liberation."
According to a commentator the Mosul operation is expected to be a messy and prolonged battle with street to street fighting.
The YBŞ and YBŞ, which have approximately 1500 fighters, are allied to the Kurdistan Workers' Party (PKK) and were trained by PKK and People's Protection Units (YPG) fighters following the Islamic State's attack on Sinjar in 2014. Thousands of women and girls were kidnapped by the jihadist group and forced into sexual slavery.
Source: ANF, Kurdishquestion.com
- Kurdish Question
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