Sinjar Agreement not implemented because of PKK: Mahma Khalil

"The failure to implement the Sinjar Agreement shows the weakness of the state.”
Mahma Khalil, Mayor of Sinjar (Shingal). (Photo: Mahma Khalil Facebook Account)
Mahma Khalil, Mayor of Sinjar (Shingal). (Photo: Mahma Khalil Facebook Account)

ERBIL (Kurdistan 24) – The Kurdistan Workers Party (PKK) and other groups are the reason the Sinjar Agreement between Iraq and the Kurdistan Region hasn’t been implemented, the media office of Mahma Khalil, Mayor of the Sinjar (Shingal) district of Nineva province said on Monday.

"What obstructed the Sinjar Agreement was the PKK, some armed factions, and outlaws,” Khalil said.

These groups did so, he added, to preserve the economic gains they make from the status quo “through their trade in contraband that generates a lot of money for them.” 

Read More: Sinjar Agreement yet to be implemented, says Kurdish Peshmerga official

"The failure to implement the Sinjar Agreement shows the weakness of the state’s prestige,” Khalil said.

Despite this failure, Khalil sees no alternative but to implement this agreement, which he says the public supports.

“The recent elections demonstrated the people's desire to implement this agreement, to exclude those who obstruct the agreement,” he said.

It also showed that people do not accept the presence of these “illegal forces.”

Khalil appealed to the federal government to implement the five articles of the Sinjar Agreement. These articles mandate the expulsion of the PKK, the city’s reconstruction, return of residents and restoration of public services.

Read More: KRG and Finland discuss the removal of "militias" from Sinjar

Last August, the United States urged the PKK and the Iranian-backed Popular Mobilization Forces (PMF) to “fully withdraw” from Sinjar to allow the long-awaited implementation of the eponymous agreement.

The Kurdistan Regional Government (KRG) has long criticized the PKK’s presence in the region.

“The presence of PKK, especially with the ongoing conflict with Turkey, has been the reason that dragged Turkey into this area,” Kurdistan Region Prime Minister Masrour Barzani said in a multi-panel event organized by the Middle East Research Institute (MERI) in October.

“So, the PKK could have done all of us a favor to have left and not given any reason for the ongoing conflicts.”

Read More: PM Barzani addresses stalled Sinjar Agreement: 'The status quo will not continue'

The PKK formed several political entities in Sinjar to run in Iraq’s October elections in an attempt to politically control Sinjar. These included the Yazidi Freedom and Democracy Party, the Yazidi Progress Party, the Yazidi Democratic Party, and the Yazidi Movement for Reform. 

The PKK performed poorly in the elections. None of its three candidates got enough votes to win a single seat in the Iraqi Parliament. The Kurdistan Democratic Party (KDP) candidates, on the other hand, won all the three seats for Sinjar in parliament with Mayor Khalil topping the list after most of that district’s residents voted for him.