Thu. Jun 1st, 2023

Tehran officials say that “terrorists” from northern Iraq are behind the ongoing anti-government protests in Iran. What is reality?

File photo IANS
File photo IANS


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Iran recently bombed several locations in northern Iraq, saying that “terrorists” from northern Iraq are behind the ongoing anti-government protests in Iran. What is reality?

Iran’s envoy to the United Nations wrote a dramatic letter to the Security Council in mid-October, in which the Tehran government expressed its deep concern that terrorist groups based in the Iraqi border region were operating in Iran. Incited peaceful protesters. According to Iran, this group has nefarious aims of “terrorism”. The letter was sent after Iran bombed four areas of neighboring Iraq and fired more than 70 missiles into the border region.

The attack on the border was Iran’s biggest operation abroad since the 1990s. As a result, an estimated 16 people, including a child, were killed, nearly 60 injured and hundreds displaced in northern Iraq. Human Rights Watch condemned the attacks, saying that Iran attacked areas where no military activity was taking place, and that areas targeted by Iranian strikes included a school and some residential areas.

The protesters are not led in Iraq

It is a fact that there are anti-Iran militias and political parties in Iraq, but do they really have anything to do with the ongoing anti-government protests in Iran?

A human rights lawyer, Faraz Ferozi, who is also a spokesperson for the Kurdish organization “Hengao Organization” based in Norway, said, “There may be some people among the protesters who sympathize with the political parties, but no protest leadership like that.” No, who is associated with any of them,” Faraz Ferozi told DW. “Most are young people. The women, the students, are leading the protestors on the streets. Therefore, there is no clear evidence to support the Tehran government’s allegations of planning a revolution from within Iraq.”

Kamal Khomeini, a Kurdish journalist and research fellow associated with the “Kurdish Peace Institute”, once said, “There will probably be some people sympathetic to the political parties among the protesters, but none associated with the protest leadership.” ‘

The Kurdish journalist said that all this is being done by the Iranian government trying to “export” its current political problems. Kamal added that Iran is trying to blame the protests on external elements as well as its own Kurdish ethnic minority.

The broader scenario

Tamer Badawi is an independent analyst researching Iraqi paramilitary forces. “Beyond the protests in Iran, there is another reason to consider the reasons behind Iran’s latest attacks on Iraq and see its significance in terms of internal Iraqi motivations,” Badawi told Deutsche Welle. He explained that this move allows the Iranian government to put more pressure on Kurdish politicians in Iraq. Badawi stressed that even before the protests began, there had been an increase in deadly attacks from Iran on Iraqi Kurdish areas.

Analyst Badawi added that the recent political standoff in Baghdad, where Iraqi Kurdish politicians sided with a local candidate against Iran-backed parties, could also play a role. According to Badawi, Iran is punishing Kurdish politicians for supporting the candidate and ensuring compliance with the new laws in Baghdad.

In the context of attacks on Iraq, Iran is following Turkey’s footsteps. Turkey has targeted Kurdish militias inside Iraq. Ankara says the group poses a threat to Turkey’s security, like the Kurdistan Workers’ Party, or PKK. As of July this year, Turkey has carried out nearly 190 Turkish airstrikes in Iraq.

Observers have warned that Iranian attacks could continue. Iran has been trying for some time to somehow get Iraqi Kurdish politicians to control Iranian Kurdish political parties.

So far, Iraqi Kurds have refused to expel Iranian dissidents, but if more Iranians start arriving, that could become a bigger problem. “More pressure to move more people into Iraqi Kurdistan,” experts say. can cause.”

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