Leading Western countries offer condolences to victims of Zakho attack

"Investigations into the circumstances of and responsibility for this attack must be conducted."
The injured civilians in Zakho hospital. (Photo: Kurdistan 24)
The injured civilians in Zakho hospital. (Photo: Kurdistan 24)

ERBIL (Kurdistan 24) – Several leading Western countries, including Germany, the United States, the United Kingdom, and the Netherlands, have condemned or offered condolences to the victims of Wednesday's deadly Zakho artillery attack that killed nine people.

"The (German) Federal Government condemns the attack on civilian targets in the province of Dohuk, in the course of which a number of people have been killed and many others injured. Attacks on civilians are completely unacceptable," the German Federal Foreign Office Spokesperson said in a statement on Thursday.

"Investigations into the circumstances of and responsibility for this attack must be conducted as a matter of urgency," read the statement. 

"The Federal Government sets great store by the respect for Iraq's state sovereignty and by upholding international law," it concluded. "We will continue to support Iraq, including the Region of Kurdistan-Iraq, especially with regard to security issues and in the stabilisation of the country."

Read More: German Consulate emphasizes that attacks on civilians in Duhok cannot be justified

The United Kingdom's Foreign, Commonwealth and Development Office spokesperson also condemned the attack, underlining that the UK "is seriously concerned by the reports of civilian casualties".

"We offer our deepest condolences to those affected and express our support for the Iraqi authorities in their investigations," the spokesperson said.

Moreover, the UK deplores the loss of life and "will continue to support the stability of Iraq including the Kurdistan Region of Iraq."

The Netherlands on Thursday offered its condolences to the families of the Zakho attack. 

"These kinds of attacks should never happen," the Dutch Consulate tweeted.

Earlier, the United States State Department condemned the attack.

Read More: US denounces artillery attack on Zakho

"The killing of civilians is unacceptable, and all states must respect their obligations under international law," the United States Ambassador to Iraq, Ambassador Alina L. Romanowski, tweeted on Thursday.

"We maintain our strong support for Iraq's sovereignty and its security, stability, and prosperity, including that of the Iraqi Kurdistan Region," she added.

Also the French government on Thursday condemned the "indiscriminate strikes that took place yesterday."

"France encourages the Iraqi authorities to continue their efforts to shed light on the exact circumstances of this tragedy," the statement added.

France also reiterated its commitment to "Iraq’s sovereignty and to the stability of the autonomous region of Iraqi Kurdistan and reaffirms that all Iraqis have the right to live in peace."

Moreover, UNAMI, UNICEF, the Arab League, Iran, and Egypt have condemned the attack that Iraq blamed on the Turkish Army.

Turkey has denied responsibility for the attack.