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Kurdish govt investigating alleged sale of German guns by Peshmerga

By Arina Moradi and Paul Iddon 23/1/2016
A German army adviser trains agroup of Peshmerga forces carrying G36 rifles. KRG photo
A German army adviser trains agroup of Peshmerga forces carrying G36 rifles. KRG photo
ERBIL, Kurdistan Region—Kurdish military officials revealed on Saturday that they are investigating reports of the sale of German-supplied weapons by Peshmerga soldiers as reported in the German media this week.

“We are going to carefully look into the issue, and violators—if any--will face serious punishment,” Jabar Yawar, Chief of Staff of the Peshmerga Ministry told Rudaw.

Yawar added that anyone found guilty of using guns for any purpose other than fighting the Islamic State (ISIS) will be put on trial in a military court.

A report by the German NDR and WDR broadcasters this week claimed to have evidence that Heckler & Koch G-3 and G-36 assault rifles and Walter P-1 handguns donated by Germany to the Peshmerga have been sold in the open market.

The Peshmerga ministry said that it will make public the outcome of its investigations.

Rudaw English followed up on the story and sent two reporters to the Erbil gun market on Saturday, but were stopped by Kurdish security forces who guarded the market gate.

A security officer said they were in the market on a special mission, without disclosing any further details.

Meanwhile Lieutenant Salar Jabbari, head of the Peshmerga ministry’s munitions department told Rudaw that he has only five cases of missing weapons on file and they are under investigation.

Lieut. Jabbari added that the cases under investigation are not necessarily linked to German-supplied weapons.

“We uphold strict rules and regulations on arms control. Our committee will go to frontline to investigate these claims,” he said.

Since the start of the war with ISIS Germany has supplied the Kurdish forces with G-3 and G-36 assault rifles as well as anti-tank Milan missiles.

The Ministry of Peshmerga said that it has received three reports related to the German G-36 and it was about the rifles breaking down in battle.

“Even in these cases we have asked the battalion to send us the broken parts to ensure they have not been sold,” he said.

Lieut. Jabbbari Salar said that the gun markets in both Erbil and Sulaimani have strict warning from the Peshmerga Ministry against buying or selling any newly-supplied German arms.

A follow-up article published in the German DW claimed, without quoting him directly, that the Governor of Kirkuk Najmaldan Karim confirmed that such sales had taken place due to economic hardship and unpaid salaries.

Speaking to Rudaw English however, the governor "categorically rejected" having said anything to any journalist to the effect of Peshmerga selling their weapons.

Lieut. Jabbari of the Peshmerga Ministry explained that they have given their German allies written guarantees that such weapons will not fall into wrong hands.

“Even if we find out that a former Peshmerga sold his gun and left the country we will call on the Interpol to find the violators,” he said.


Stewee Guy
Stewee Guy | 23/1/2016
People have to understand that when the Peshmergas are not paid for 3 months,few bad apples will sell their weapon to support their families at home. The corruption in the KRG is the main factor, we'll never have own own country until we have a government similar to the one in Israel, where they built the foundation of a democratic government from the start 1940's.
kalim | 23/1/2016
people should think about - german weapons are anyway in the mid-east. different groups (also the jihadists) have some german rifles. g3 and also some g36 - could always bought on the black-markets. G3 rifles are really not a rarity in the mid-east. KRG should investigate these cases. rifles have a serial number.... if the rifles are from the german pesh-aid, krg should punish the guilty ones ( but not to hard - normal, like western armys ) ****all in all , it´s not a big thing. maybe some pesh. have done that. - than they get punished. ...or the rifles are from elsewhere - !!!
Xalaf | 23/1/2016
Good, expose the vicious lies being spread, there's a relentless propaganda onslaught on Kurds lately. Apparently taking in 2 million refugees with a severe economic crises and sacrificing 4500 Kurdish fighter in both Iraq and Syria against ISIL is not enough. Or it could just be that it's making the backers of ISIL very nervous, because we're winning despite all odds.
M Gonzales
M Gonzales | 23/1/2016
How rampant is the question, a few here and their is not the end of the world, but dozens of rifle's is. Simply pass a law that makes it illegal to own or sale certain rifles (except the AK, to many in circulation already)
UPDATE | 25/1/2016
update _ some reporter (which is not clear - who they are )said they seen 1(one) Walther P1 Pistol , and 2 or 3 G3 Rifles - which are MAYBE from the german patch to the peshmerga. ***this is nothing. loughable. ...has not the worth, to bring it in the news. **even if you think about that many G3 rifles are in the middle-east ,and iraq is really not a stable ,perfect organized standard model for a perfect state. **and walther P1 is a a piece of scrap - from the first james bond movie (only good for civil people for defend in worst case) !!!

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