Facing rising crime, Kurdish leaders and residents in Kirkuk report a security vacuum in Kurdish neighbourhoods of the city since it was taken over by Iraqi forces.
Kurds feel unsafe going out at night, fearing theft, killing, or abduction, Rudaw discovered in an investigative report on the situation in Kirkuk more than three months after the Kurdish forces departed the disputed city.
“The security establishments we had were run by political parties, and a security vacuum emerged after the parties left following the events of October 16. These implications in Kurdish areas are the result of this,” said Mohammed Nasradin, a Gorran official in Kirkuk.
“The security confusion is related to the political confusion,” he explained, adding that the solution to restoring security to Kirkuk is setting a new political agenda – one that is not driven by the interests of individual political parties.
Arabization is also a problem.
The Patriotic Union of Kurdistan (PUK) is “confronting Arabization every day,” said Rawand Mala Mahmud, deputy head of the party’s Kirkuk headquarters.
Civilians have also staged protests against Arabization, but have been shut down by security forces and face arrest.
The administration of acting Governor Rakan Saeed al-Jabouri are institution Arabization policies, said Adham Jumha, a protest organizer who was arrested for his work.
“They are doing the work in a very hasty manner. They have an opportunity during which they want to do this as soon as possible,” Jumha said.