Peshmerga, Iraqi army reach deal on security arrangement on Mount Qarachogh

The source did not elaborate further details on the content of the deal.
Iraqi defense officials and Kurdistan Region Peshmerga forces are pictured standing for a group photo, Nov. 1, 2023. (Photo: Submitted to Kurdistan 24)
Iraqi defense officials and Kurdistan Region Peshmerga forces are pictured standing for a group photo, Nov. 1, 2023. (Photo: Submitted to Kurdistan 24)

ERBIL (Kurdistan 24) – The Iraqi defense ministry and Kurdistan Region Peshmerga forces on Wednesday reached an agreement to manage the security outposts on Mount Qarachogh in Makhmour district, where the two forces have recently fought, a source confirmed to Kurdistan 24.

The military officials met on Wednesday and discussed the new security arrangement in the mountainous areas after the outposts had been recently deserted by Kurdistan Workers’ Party (PKK) militants, a source on the condition of anonymity due to media regulations, told Kurdistan 24. 

Top Peshmerga and Iraqi defense ministry officials attended the meeting, including the Chief of General Staff of the Iraqi Armed Forces.

The source did not elaborate further on the details of the deal.

As a result of a skirmish between the forces last month, at least four Peshmerga members were killed along with a score of Iraqi soldiers over the control of a number of outposts at the mountain.

Taking a few hours, the fighting was quickly subdued following the swift involvement of both Erbil and Baghdad officials.  

The Ministry of Peshmerga on Monday expressed support for the call made by the Iraqi Prime Minister and Commander-in-Chief of the Armed Forces, Mohammed Shia' al-Sudani.

The Ministry described the causalities on both sides as “martyrs” and reiterated the commitment to work with the Iraqi federal government for a “sustainable and fundamental solution.”

Erbil Governorate said the fighting was caused by a “misunderstanding” between the forces, similarly echoing the ministry’s call for a probe.

Makhmour is a majority Kurdish district in southern Erbil province, where it has been part of the disputed territories between Erbil and Baghdad for decades. 

The two forces have previously conducted joint sweeping operations against ISIS in the area. Per an agreement between the two governments, a joint Iraqi and Kurdish force will be formed to be deployed into the disputed territories.