US, KRG to continue fight against ISIS with PYD support

US State Department Deputy Assistant McGurk meets with Barzani, PYD on combined efforts against ISIS, both US, Kurdish Regional Government decide to fight ISIS with PYD support

Photo by: Reuters
Photo by: Reuters

Iraqi Kurdistan Regional President Masoud Barzani seen in this archieve photo.

Updated Sep 16, 2015

US State Department Deputy Assistant Brett McGurk and his accompanying delegation met with Iraqi Kurdistan Regional President Masoud Barzani and leader of the Democratic Union Party (PYD) Saleh Moslem in Arbil on Tuesday to discuss recent joint efforts against ISIS, and both the US and KRG agreed to continue fighting a ISIS with the support of PYD. 

The meeting was announced on McGurk’s Twitter account.

US Ambassador to Iraq, Stuart Jones, Commanding General of US Army Central, James L. Terry and Special Forces Commander in Iraq, Tony Thomas, were amongst those who attended the meeting held in Barzani's official residence in Arbil. 

According to a written statement from Barzani's office, the topics discussed during the meeting were the fight against terror in Syria and Iraq, the current situation of the war front, rescue operations in Mosul, Iraq and the Iraqi army's fight against ISIS. 

Joint operations with the US-led coalition forces and Peshmerga, which is the military of Kurdish Regional Government (KRG) in Iraq, were also discussed. 

McGurk also noted that the US will continue assisting the Peshmerga in its fight against ISIS. 

The US-led coalition started its air strikes in Syria and Iraq last September targeting ISIS positions, where the militant group has self-proclaimed the establishment of a state in territory under its control, making Syria’s Raqqa city their capital.

After the meeting, Hemin Hawrami, head of Foreign Relations Office of Barzani’s Kurdish Regional Government (KRG) stated that they will continue to fight against ISIS in northern Syria with the PYD.

The PYD has been controlling a region in northern Syria along Turkish borders starting from Afrin in the west and extending to northeasternmost point of Syria, only interrupted by a region controlled mainly by ISIS between Jarablus and Marea.

The PYD expansion against ISIS has been supported by the US-led air strikes in Kobani, Tel Abyad and Hasakah.

The PYD is the Syrian affiliate of the outlawed PKK which is recognised as a terrorist organisation by Turkey, NATO, the EU, and the US.

According to the statement, both Barzani and McGurk agreed that there have so far been no civilian deaths during US-led coalition air stikes on ISIS target points.

TRTWorld and agencies