Kurdistan Region President Massoud Barzani calls for the defeat of ISIS in Kobane.
ERBIL, Kurdistan Region—Kurdish President Massoud Barzani said in a statement on Thursday that Peshmerga forces dispatched to Kobane are to reinforce the defenders of the city with firepower “and defeat the terrorists in Western Kurdistan.”
Barzani said that leaders of the Democratic Union Party (PYD) in Kobane had requested a backup team of Peshmerga with heavy weapons “and based on their request we decided to send this force.”
“It is an honor for Kurdistan and the brave Peshmerga to help any town or village in any part of Kurdistan,” said Barzani. “It is an honor that we are fighting the most violent terrorist group on behalf of humanity.”
The Kurdish president said that Erbil is ready to provide more Peshmerga forces for the defense of Kobane if needed.
On Tuesday the Kurdistan Region sent a unit of 150 Peshmerga fighters armed with advanced weapons and artillery to the Kurdish city of Kobane on the Turkey-Syria border under siege from the Islamic State (IS).
Barzani said that sending the Peshmerga to Kobane wouldn't have been possible without the United States and Turkey’s consent.
“Secretary of State Mr. John Kerry told me in a telephone conversation that they were working with Turkey about sending Peshmerga forces through Turkish territory to Kobane,” said Barzani.
He said that the deployment of Peshmerga forces to Kobane had involved several meetings between Kurdish, US and Turkish officials.
Barzani added that the “quick response of the coalition forces, their military support for Kurdistan Region and US air strikes greatly helped the YPG fighters and were instrumental in defeating the ISIS in Kobane.”
The president said that “standing by Kobane is a patriotic duty.”
“In the beginning and due to geographical distance and the siege by terrorists, getting support to Kobane was very difficult,” he said. “But we did our best with our own people and our friends to make sure Kobane doesn't fall to the terrorists.”
Barzani described the Islamic State group as a “racist organization”.
“The group isn't only an extremist religious group, but most of them are also racists that is why they targeted the Kurdistan Region and Rojava.”