Sign In / Up

Add contribution as a guest

Your email will not be displayed publicly
Benefit of signing in/signing up to personalize comment

Comment as a guest

Your email will not be displayed publicly
Benefit of signing in/signing up to personalize comment


Not a member Register   Forgot Password
or connect using





Sweden to double military advisors in Kurdistan

By Rudaw 25/10/2016
Swedish PM Stefan Löfven was greeted at the airport by Kurdish Prime Minister Nechirvan Barzani
ERBIL, Kurdistan Region - Visiting Swedish Prime Minister Stefan Löfven announced Monday his government will increase the number of military personnel in the Kurdistan Region from 35 to 70 advisors.


Lövfen arrived in Erbil late Monday evening after meeting with Iraqi top officials in Baghdad, where he pledged more support for the ongoing war against ISIS in the country.


“We will expand our efforts against Daesh (ISIS) because we consider it so important. Sweden plans on doubling the number of people from 35 to 70 and also to become more flexible geographically,” Löfven told reporters after his meeting with Iraqi Prime Minister Haidar al-Abadi in Baghdad.


Swedish advisors are based in the Kurdistan Region and have been training Kurdish Peshmerga forces since 2015.


In Erbil, Lövfen was greeted by his Kurdish counterpart Nechirvan Barzani at the airport, marking the first official visit by a serving Swedish premier to the Kurdistan Region.


"This was a planned part of the trip," Jonatan Holst, press secretary of the Swedish PM, told daily Aftonbladet, without giving further details due to "security reasons."


Lövfen travelled to Iraq directly from Saudi Arabia where he had meeting with the Saudi King Salman Bin Abdelaziz in Riyadh on Sunday.


The taskforce, which will need the formal approval of the Swedish parliament, will only be engaged in training missions inside the Kurdistan Region, where German and British military personnel have set up special training camps for Peshmerga forces.

Kurdish sources said the ongoing military operation to retake Mosul and the predicted refugee crisis will be on the agenda as Lövfen meets Kurdish President Masoud Barzani on Tuesday.    


The Swedish support for the Kurdish struggle against the jihadists has so far been more humanitarian than military. Former Swedish Foreign Minister Carl Bildt, who visited refugee camps in Erbil in September 2014, said the Swedish aid agency (SIDA) will allocate the bulk of their budget for the coming years to help refugees in Iraq and Turkey with over 3 million refugees.


The serving Swedish Foreign Minister Margot Walström has said her country has comprehensive experience in humanitarian missions and that is why they had focused on relief efforts in Kurdistan.


Over 300 Swedes are presumed to have traveled to Iraq and Syria to join ISIS as foreign fighters, according to the director of the Swedish intelligence (SÄPO), Anders Thornberg, who earlier said that at least 100 Swedes are now confirmed to be ISIS recruits in the Middle East. 


Non kurd | 25/10/2016
Thank you Sweden. This is a logical move to stem the tide of refugees pouring into Europe from Iraq and Syria. It's cheaper to simply train local forces to fight daesh and protect refugees.

Be Part of Your Rudaw!

Share your stories, photos and videos with Rudaw, and quite possibly the world.

What You Say

The Observer | 1/16/2019 12:41:21 PM
It is the "Ottoman Slap" ,thatv Erdogan has threatends America with. This attack happens on the orders of Erdogan.He has threatened Trump and here...
DDT | 1/16/2019 12:58:16 PM
It is Erdogan who ordered the attack against the American soldier, he is telling the American to hurry up and leave immediately, otherwise you will...
Coalition targeted in Manbij explosion, fatalities reported: monitor
| 3 hours ago | (2)
guest2002 | 1/15/2019 4:07:52 PM
HTS hates Kurds just as much as jihadi Turks and their leader erDOGan . Before there was a PKK turks used any excuse to killkurds. Saddam did not...
Pete | 1/16/2019 11:07:39 AM
Like Turkey, al Qaeda wishes to butcher anyone who doesn't submit to its jihadi dictatorship, and to destroy the right of humans to plot their own...
PKK is ‘enemy’ of Syria revolution, says jihadist leader
| yesterday at 11:03 | (8)
Muraz Adzhoev | 1/15/2019 7:20:38 PM
Absolutely immoral and disgusting hypocrisy as it used to be and is there.
Renas | 1/16/2019 9:32:01 AM
A joke, "Iran is a reliable friend of Kurds". You are not reliable at all. You country is controlled by islamist terrorists and you see Kurds as a...
Kurdistan, Iran keen to see trade grow as Sulaimani hosts economic forum
| 21 hours ago | (3)
Anoop Suri | 1/16/2019 8:38:18 AM
Great Work Kavita, good to see a person of Indian Origin working on such a great cause
Learning knows no bounds for woman teaching English to Kurds
| yesterday at 11:47 | (1)

Elsewhere on Rudaw

Assad must take control of northern Syria: Russian FM 5 hours ago |

Assad must take control of northern Syria: Russian FM

Russia intervened in the Syrian civil war in 2015 more
Fire destroys cabins in Erbil IDP camp, no casualties 7 hours ago |

Fire destroys cabins in Erbil IDP camp, no casualties

Fourteen shelters were destroyed more
0.438 seconds