Erbil, Baghdad reach agreement on joint deployments, border crossing: sources

Sources also told Kurdistan 24 that the two sides also reached an understanding on how to manage the Faysh Khabur crossing with Syria, for which Iraqi forces and Iranian-backed Shia militias launched an assault on the Kurdish forces without success.
author_image Nadia Riva

ERBIL, Kurdistan Region (Kurdistan 24) - Iraqi federal forces and the Kurdish Peshmerga essentially reached an agreement on Monday regarding a joint redeployment to eight disputed areas, according to sources. 

While a signed agreement has not yet been released, sources reported Peshmerga Forces and Iraqi government troops had agreed to be jointly deployed to the Mahmodiya, Sheikhan, Sahela, Gwer, Al Qosh, Khazir, and Faidah areas.

Sources also told Kurdistan 24 that the two sides also reached an understanding on how to manage the Faysh Khabur crossing with Syria, for which Iraqi forces and Iranian-backed Shia militias launched an assault on the Kurdish forces without success. 

In the aftermath of the Sep. 25 referendum on independence, Baghdad demanded all international border crossings, airports, and disputed areas come under federal authority.

It seems, however, the negotiating parties agreed the border crossing, which is located in the constitutionally-recognized and protected Kurdistan Region, would be managed by Iraqi borders guards as well as Peshmerga and US troops. 

 

The two parties began the talks over the weekend after a ceasefire was called on Friday for issues to be resolved "within the framework of the Iraqi Constitution." The meetings were held in Mosul under the auspices of the US.   

Clashes erupted in the Zummar and Rabia area, northwest of Mosul last week as the Shia Hashd al-Shaabi militia and Iraqi security forces attempted to reach the Faysh Khabur border crossing within the Kurdistan Region. 

Baghdad had previously said its forces would not cross the 2003 line of contacts, which the Peshmerga have been defending since the fall of the regime.

The Kurdish leadership called for an immediate end of all military operations in the region and offered to freeze the results of the independence vote, an offer Baghdad rejected.

Aid organizations stressed the importance of maintaining the Khabur crossing open as it is still being used to transport humanitarian aid to Syria camps.