- Title: IRAQ : TURKISH KURDS MOVED BY UNITED NATIONS
- Date: 28th March 1995
- Summary: ARBIL, BESILE AND ZAKHO, NORTHERN IRAQ (MARCH 28 AND 29, 1995) (RTV - ACCESS ALL) BESILE (MARCH 29, 1995) 1. SV VARIOUS OF HOUSES REPORTEDLY DAMAGED BY TURKISH SHELLING 0.08 2. SV HOUSE WITH LARGE HOLE IN ROOF 0.14 3. SV EXTERIORS OF DAMAGED HOUSES, CHARRED WOOD AND SCORCH MARKS ON WALLS 0.30 ZAKHO (MARCH 29, 1995) 4. SV UNITED NATIONS CONVOY BUSES LEAVING ZAKHO REFUGEE CAMP 0.44 5. SV VARIOUS OF TRUCKS AND BUSES DRIVING ALONG ROAD 1.02 6. SV CONVOY DRIVING OFF INTO DISTANCE 1.11 NEAR ZAKHO (MARCH 29, 1995) 7. SV TURKISH TANKS DRIVING ALONG ROAD 1.27 NEAR ARBIL (MARCH 28, 1995) 8. SV KURDISTAN DEMOCRATIC PARTY (KDP) TROOPS 1.30 9. SCU AMMUNITIONS AND WEAPONS OF KDP 1.35 10. SV KDP SOLDIERS 1.41 11. SV KDP SOLDIER WITH MACHINE GUN 1.50 12. SV PATRIOTIC UNION OF KURDISTAN (PUK) TROOPS IN DISTANCE 1.57 13. SV KDP SOLDIERS FIRING 2.10 Initials Script is copyright Reuters Limited. All rights reserved.
- Embargoed: 12th April 1995 13:00
- Location: BESILE, ZAKHO AND ARBIL, NORTHERN IRAQ
- Country: Iraq
- Reuters ID: LVA1AI091DZK84RV61YMKKEBEH4D
- Story Text: The United Nations (U.N.) on Wednesday (March 29) rushed more Turkish Kurds away from a nine-day old incursion by Turkey's army into northern Iraq.
The 177 Kurds left the town of Zakho under U.N. escort for the safety of refugee camps at Atrush, 100 km (60 miles) to the south, in the second such wave to flee the conflict zone.
A larger convoy on Sunday carried about 1,000 refugees, many of whom originally fled what they said was heavy-handed treatment by the army inside Turkey, to Atrush.
The Kurds, who said they feared Turkish troops harassing suspected rebel sympathisers in Zakho, barged into a U.N. aid compound on Tuesday demanding to be taken to safety.
There are fears that Iraqi Kurds are increasingly being caught up in the military offensive.
Residents of Beshile in Northern Iraq say they were forced to evacuate their homes after coming under attack by Turkish planes last week.
Most residents had fled to nearby villages ahead of the bombing, forewarned when Turkish aircraft carried out a similar raid on neighbouring Dergele village.
But residents said that within days of the bombing, troops entered and ransacked the houses before setting them alight. Some threw villagers' belongings into the mountain stream which runs through the village, the residents said.
Inside the village were the tops from cans of fish of a sort that Turkish soldiers eat.
Near the Iraqi town of Arbil at least 100 people are believed to have been killed in clashes between two Iraqi Kurdish factions.
The Kurdistan Democratic Party (KDP), led by Massoud Barzani, said the clashes occurred when its rival, the Patriotic Union of Kudistan (PUK) tried to recapture positions near the key city of Arbil.
An Iraqi opposition umbrella group, the Iraqi National Congress (INC), said the KDP had suffered heavy losses.
A spokesman for the KDP said the attack was on the outskirts of Arbil, to the east of town. But he claimed KDP forces were repelling the attack.
The reported fighting took place about 160 km (100 miles) south of where 35,000 Turkish troops are fighting another Kurdish group, the Kurdistan Workers Party (PKK), which is fighting for a separate state in southeast Turkey.
Arbil, seat of the region's paralysed Kurdish administration, has been a focal point for clashes since last December. It is held by the PUK.
It is partially surrounded by opposing Kurdish fighters while troops loyal to Iraqi President Saddam Hussein are positioned about 10 km (six miles) to the south.
The KDP is nominally in control of the Iraqi-Turkish border area where Turkish troops have been hunting Kurdish rebels from Turkey since March 20. The Iraqi Kurd groups have not taken part in that fighting.
The PUK claimed the fighting began when forces from the rival KDP attacked several PUK positions in Arbil on Monday.
The PUK says at least 100 people were killed on both sides after the KDP forces attacked eight PUK positions in and around Arbil.
The Iraqi Kurds, protected by Western air power since breaking from Baghdad after the Gulf War in 1991, set up a regional administration in Arbil after elections the next year.
Their power-sharing administration became unworkable when clashes broke out in December last year over the collection of taxes from Turkish truck drivers at the border town of Zakho.
The inter-Kurdish conflict slackened last month after a joint United States-Turkish delegation warned both sides to stop fighting or risk losing Western sympathy. Turkish officials said then about 500 people had died.
- Copyright Holder: REUTERS
- Copyright Notice: (c) Copyright Thomson Reuters 2015. Open For Restrictions - http://about.reuters.com/fulllegal.asp
- Usage Terms/Restrictions: None