KCK’s Bayik in conciliatory message to KDP after months of tension

Co-chair of the Executive Council of the Kurdistan Communities Union (KCK) Jamil Bayik (File)

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SULAIMANI — Addressing months of intra-Kurdish tensions, Co-chair of the Executive Council of the Kurdistan Communities Union (KCK) Jamil Bayik said on Thursday (July 16) that the group does not want to fight against the Kurdistan Democratic Party (KDP) in any way.

Bayik said in an interview with a media outlet affiliated with the Kurdistan Workers’ Party (PKK) that "some people" had met with KDP leader Masoud Barzani, who communicated that he stands by his earlier promise to make fratricide "haram" or "forbidden."

Bayik said that the promise was and is "valuable” to the KCK, adding that the group’s members want it to be fulfilled.

He said they are ready to implement any responsibility borne by the group.

The KCK is an umbrella group of political factions associated with the PKK, which has waged a decades-long fight for Kurdish rights and autonomy against the Turkish government. The group has numerous bases in the Kurdistan Region, including in Qandil and the border areas in Erbil and Duhok governorates.

The KDP has close political, economic, and security ties with Ankara.

Since November 2020, there have been several deadly clashes between the PKK and Peshmerga or other units affiliated with the KDP. The incidents come in the context of on-going Turkish military operations in the Kurdistan Region and northern Iraq, which have resulted in the deaths of more than a dozen civilians since June 2020.

Some KDP members have called on the PKK to leave the Kurdistan Region, blaming its presence for inviting Turkish attacks, with some going farther and saying that the PKK may have to be removed by force if it refuses to leave.

For Kurds of all political stripes, fighting between Kurdish groups is a red line.

(NRT Digital Media)