Sinjar becomes latest flashpoint for Iran-Turkey tensions in Iraq
Clashes between Iraqi security forces and a Yazidi militia known as the Shingal Resistance Units (YBS) may represent one of several new fronts in escalating tensions between Iran and Turkey in Iraq.
Turkey’s military actions are complemented by official Turkish-Syrian contacts, brokered by Moscow, to address a shared interest in containing Kurdish ambitions in Syria, along the lines of the 1998 Adana agreement between Ankara and Damascus regarding the PKK.
In Iraq, both Baghdad and the Kurdistan Regional Government have publicly condemned Turkish attacks on PKK positions as violations of the country’s sovereignty, but these protests haven’t expanded beyond pro forma demarches.
Turkey has conducted cross-border operations against the PKK and maintained bases in northern Iraq since the 1980s, when Saddam Hussein was Iraq’s president.