Monday, October 13, 2014

Kurdish Rebels Assail Turkish Inaction on ISIS as Peril to Peace Talks

By KIRK SEMPLE and TIM ARANGO, NYT
OCT. 12, 2014

ENDZA, Iraq — As jihadist fighters of the Islamic State lay siege to the Kurdish town of Kobani in Syria, the implications of the battle have resonated deeply among residents in this part of the Qandil Mountains in northeastern Iraq, hundreds of miles and a country away.

In this region, beneath craggy peaks near the Iranian border, is the headquarters of the Kurdistan Workers’ Party, or P.K.K., which has been fighting a guerrilla war against the Turkish state for three decades, a fight that has claimed more than 30,000 lives. Members of the group, along with fighters from an offshoot rebel army in Syria, have been at the heart of the Kurdish resistance in Kobani.

P.K.K. commanders say their halting, nine-year-old peace process with the Turkish government and, indeed, the future of the region, will turn on the battle for Kobani and on Turkey’s response. If Turkey does not help the embattled Kurdish forces in Kobani, the commanders say, they will break off peace talks and resume their guerrilla war within Turkey, plunging yet another country in the region into armed conflict.

(More here.)

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