Tag Archives: Obama

Readout of the President and Vice President’s Meeting with Iraqi Kurdistan Region President Masoud Barzani

Photo: The White House
Photo: The White House

President Obama participated in a meeting at the White House with Vice President Biden and Masoud Barzani, President of the Kurdistan Region of Iraq. They discussed a range of issues, including the campaign to degrade and ultimately destroy ISIL and the status of ongoing political initiatives to address the needs of the Iraqi people and foster cooperation across all communities.

President Obama and Vice President Biden reaffirmed the United States’ strong and continued support to the Iraqi Kurdistan Region and the Kurdish people.

They also reaffirmed the United States’ enduring commitment under the Strategic Framework Agreement to a united, federal, and democratic Iraq, as defined in the Iraqi constitution.

President Obama and Vice President Biden each commended the bravery of the Kurdish Peshmerga and expressed condolences to the victims of ISIL throughout Iraq.

President Barzani thanked President Obama and Vice President Biden for the significant military support that the United States has provided to Kurdish Peshmerga in coordination with the Iraqi government and the Iraqi Security Forces, including the military action taken to protect Erbil and other parts of Iraqi Kurdistan following the fall of Mosul.

Both sides agreed on the importance of strengthening relations between Baghdad and Erbil and underscored their continued shared commitment to provide support to the millions of civilians displaced by the violence in the region.

Barack Obama: Kobanê’nin Düşmesini Biz de İstemiyoruz

NEKA

Mehmet Akbaş (Sağdan İkinci) NEKA üyeleriyle

Amerika’nın Rhode Island eyaletindeki Kürt toplumunun derneği ‘New England Kurdish Association’ (NEKA) başkanı Mehmet Akbaş Cuma günü ABD Başkanı Barack Obama tarafından görüşmeye davet edildi.

Görüşmede Akbaş’ın Kobane konusundaki görüşlerini dinleyen Başkan Obama, durumu yakından izlediklerini belirtti.

Akbaş’ın Kobane düşmemeli, bu nedenle yardımınıza ihtiyaç var demesi üzerine, orada savaşan Kürtlere yardım ettiklerini hatırlatan Obama, yardım etmeye devam edeceklerini söyledi.

Kendilerinin de kesinlikle Kobane’nin düşmesini istemediklerini ifade eden Obama, Kürtlerin Ortadoğu’daki duruşlarıyla tarihin doğru yerinde yer aldıklarını ve kendilerinin de bunu iyi gördüklerini söyledi.

Aktaş’ın 18-20 yaşlarındaki Kürt kızlarının IŞİD’e karşı kahramanca savaştıklarını hatırlatması üzerine gülerek kadın korumalarını gösteren Obama ‘Bu dediğini bu bayanlar duysun dedi’

ViDEO:

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* Bu haber M. Akbaş ile yapılan telefon görüşmesinde aktardığı bilgiler üzerinden hazırlanmıştır.

Senator Ted Cruz: Arm the Kurds against ISIS

Senator Ted Cruz Comments on ISIS on CNN’s State of the Union with Candy Crowley

Ted Cruz

“We have a tremendous asset on the ground right now, which is the Kurds… The Obama administration keeps focusing on Syrian rebels, many of whom have far too close ties to radical Islamic terrorists for it to make any sense for us to be supporting them.

The Kurds are allies and they are boots on the ground. And when we work with them in concert, they’re ready to fight on the front line, along with serious airpower.”

Defense Chief Of Kobane Asks for Weapons from US

In a phone conversation at 9pm local time, Kobane Defense Minister Ismet Hasan says YPG forces are in control 70% of the city.

Ismet_Hasan

Hasan said YPG forces inflicted heavy loses to ISIS but they are receiving reinforcements from Aleppo, Raqqa and other surrounding towns.

Hasan reiterated that they have been resisting the ISIS with light weapons for 26 days, and they urgently needed heavy weapons.

“If the U.S. can provide us weapons that are capable of eliminating their heavy weapons, like tanks and artillery, and continue air strikes against the ISIS, we are confident we will be able to kick them out of Kobane”.

Hasan added that people of Kobane and the YPG fighters are determined to fight until the end.

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If you want my participation to a show, interview me or get a quote on Kobane and other Kurdish related issues, please contact me at mciviroglu@gmail.com

You can follow me on Twitter for latest updates from Kobane  https://twitter.com/mutludc

Why ISIS Focus Its Attacks on Kobane?

Kobane_Civilians

First published on July 10, 2014

ISIS attacks against Kobane are significant for several reasons. First, with the recent confidence gained by taking over Mosul and other cities in Iraq, ISIS wants to expand its control over a larger territory of Syria as well. After seizing two oil fields from a rival extremist group, ISIS wants to seize Kobane which remains in the middle of territories under its control. ISIS currently controls Girsespi (Tall Abyad), Jarablus and Raqqah. It desperately wants Kobane to connect the regions under its control and make it a part of the “Islamic State”.

Taking control of such an important city will enable ISIS to seize new territories from the direction of east and west, in addition to connecting Tall Abyad and Jarablus.

Furthermore, being a border city with Suruc of Sanliurfa province of Turkey, seizing Kobane will also allow ISIS to control the Mursitpinar Border Gate with Turkey as well. It is well known that ISIS gives specific importance to border gates especially for trade, easy crossing for fighters and logistics, the treatment of injured fighters etc. In this regard, it is increasingly likely that ISIS will plan attacks on other border crossings controlled by the Kurds like Serekaniye and Til Kochar (Yarubia), and crossings controlled by rival Islamist groups in Azaz.

In addition, ISIS also wants to cut Kobane from the Kurdish Mountain Region (Kurd Dagh) or Canton of Afrin and Canton of Jazira (Hasakah). As of now, moving between three Kurdish Cantons is difficult. According to local officials, currently hundreds of civilians are also held hostage in Jarablus and Tall Abyad. Also some 130 Kurdish students who were kidnapped by the group remain in captivity for over a month after they were kidnapped as they were returning from school exams in Aleppo.

Despite all calls from international human rights groups those children and other civilians are still not released and are being used as a bargaining chip to pressurize YPG, according to local human rights defenders.

If Kobane falls to ISIS, such a possibility will bring some additional advantages for ISIS to further pursue its goals. It is apparent that ISIS does not hesitate to use any means to seize the city including kidnapping civilians and crucifying them, destroying houses and taking properties and even cutting off the water of the city.

Due to the fact that the taking of Kobane will be very advantageous for ISIS, it is not holding back from committing all sorts of cruelty against the people. ISIS is kidnapping civilians, publicly crucifying them and killing them by torture. Local sources are frequently reporting that ISIS is ransacking civilian homes and confiscating civilian property. As a matter of fact, it is well known that ISIS has on several occasions cut off the drinking water supply to Kobane.

One other factor to remember is that Kobane is the first city in Rojava to have been freed from the Assad regime on July 19, 2012. Hence, the city has a special meaning for Kurds in Rojava. If the Kurds lose this city it will also have a demoralizing impact on them and their struggle for self-rule. Therefore, attacking Kobane is also attacking the gains of the Kurds in Syria, and a message for Kurds that ISIS [and its regional supporters] will not allow Kurdish autonomy in Syria.

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Read my detailed VICE article on Kobane published in July

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For feedback, quote or interview requests, please contact me at mciviroglu@gmail.com

You can follow me on Twitter for latest updates from Kobani  https://twitter.com/mutludc

Update From Kobani (October 6, 2014)

Kobaneeee

According to sources inside Kobani, as if October 6 7:30am UTC the city is still under the YPG control. City center was shelled all day on Sunday by the tanks stationed on south of the hill which is under ISIS control.

Civilians death and injuries were reported although the exact numbers are not known.

Contrary to what is widely reported, there are still many civilians in the city. Ayse Efendi, Cochair of Kobane Council and the wife of PYD leader Salih Muslim estimates there are 10-15 thousand civilians still in the city.

Kobane Defense Minister Ismet S. Hasan says heavy fighting especially continued near Mistanour Hill.

Ismet_Hasan

“ISIS wanted to attack the city with a vehicle full of explosives but YPG forces detected and destroyed the vehicle.”

Hasan also informs that a commander of Women’s Protection Units (YPJ *) Arin Mirkan detonated herself in a self-sacrificing mission to among a group of ISIS fighters.

Meanwhile coalition forces also conducted airstrikes around 02:30 local time against ISIS targets on Mistanour Hill and Termik Village.

Since access to areas targeted by coalition jets is either none or quite limited, real effectiveness of the attacks are unknown.

However, Hasan stated his content about coalition airstrikes calling them important.

“US airstrikes are important and we value them. We hope there will be more frequent strikes against ISIS targets who continuously shell the city. Airstrikes can be more effective if they are day time because ISIS predicts the strikes and act accordingly.”

* YPJ is the the women only military force of the YPG. Some experts estimate about 35% of the YPG fighters are women.

**This report is written from the information obtained from Hasan and several other sources inside of Kobani.

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For feedback, quote or interview requests, please contact me at mciviroglu@gmail.com

You can follow me on Twitter for latest updates from Kobani  https://twitter.com/mutludc

Update From Kobani (October 5, 2014)

Mistenur

According to Anwar Moslem, Premier of Kobani Canton fierce battles continue around the city, especially near Mistanour Hill, and they are still in full control of Kobani city.

“Fierce fights continue around the city, with clashes intensifying around Mistanour Hill. ISIS pushes hard to seize the hill, but YPG resists holding it.”

Enwer Mislim

Moslem adds that ISIS has 4 tanks near Mistanour which continuously shell the city.

Some sources report ISIS now control of southern part if Mistanour Hill while some others did not verify this information.

As far as coalition air strikes concerned, sources say there were probably 6 (some say 5, some others say 7) strikes last night. However, they did not cause serious damage since heavy shelling continue (*).

Several other sources inside Kobani also provided information similar to Mr. Moslem’s account. Additionally, they reported that there are casualties from both sides, but loses of ISIS were considerably more than YPG’s.

* Because access to areas targeted by coalition jets is limited, information of sources about the effectiveness of airstrikes may not always be accurate. However, all sources agree that Saturday, October 4 strikes were the most effective strikes of coalition forces against ISIS near Kobani.

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For feedback, quote or interview requests, please contact me at mciviroglu@gmail.com

You can follow me on Twitter for latest updates from Kobani  https://twitter.com/mutludc

Kurdish Demo in Support Besieged Kurdish City Kobani, Washington, DC

KOBANI NEEDS YOUR VOICE! *

Kobani_ISIS

Dear Community members, human rights activists and peace advocates,

The Kurdish city of Kobani (aka Kobane / Ayn al-Arab) in Northern Syria has been under brutal attack by the Islamic State of Iraq and Sham (ISIS/ ISIL/ IS) for 20 days now.

Despite the heroic resistance of the Kurdish Protection Units (YPG) and the people of Kobani, ISIS has the advantage of sophisticated US weapons it seized from the Iraqi Army in Mosul and has surrounded the city.

Unfortunately, the Kurds only have light weapons, which are no match for the heavy ISIS weapons such as Humvees and Abrams tanks.

If the international coalition against ISIS does not act immediately by carrying out more effective airstrikes against ISIS around Kobani, a large scale massacre similar to that carried out by ISIS against the Ezidi community in Sinjar, is imminent.

While we applaud President Obama for his determination in “degrading and destroying ISIS”, we are saddened by his inaction against ISIS in its attack on Kobani.

If the international community, especially the US, does not act immediately, thousands of people will face execution by ISIS.

As the leader of free world, the US has the moral responsibility to support the Kurds, who are fighting against ISIS both in Syria and in Iraq.

The coming hours are fateful and pivotal for the people of Kobani. We need to stand up and make our voices heard, to the White House and to the entire world.

Please join us in front of the White House in an effort to draw public attention to this very critical situation.

When: October 4, 2014

Where: In front of the White House

What Time: 3:00 pm

* This statement was sent by the Greater Washington Area Kurdish Community

Yezidi Demonstration in Front of the White House

photo 1

Yezidi community in Washington, DC and their non-Yezidi Kurdish brethren held a demonstration in front of the White House on August 9, 2014 to demand more help from President Obama.

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photo 3

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Who Are Yezidis? Yezidis, who refer to themselves as Ezidis, are a Kurdish non-Muslim population living predominantly in the Sinjar (Şengal) region near Mosul. A sizable Yezidi population also lives in the Iraqi Kurdish town of Sheikhan, where the most important Yezidi holy site Lalesh is located.

In Turkey, small numbers of Yezidis live in Batman, Sanliurfa, Mardin, and Diyarbakir. Others live in Syria, Armenia, Georgia, as well as Europe, Canada and the United States. Yezidi religious traditions, including prayers and holy books, are administered in the Kurmanji dialect of Kurdish. In recent years especially, the Yezidis have been accepted as an important element of the broader Kurdish identity.

Şêx Mûrşid Maşûq Xeznewî ser Rewşa Kurdên Êzîdî Dipeyîve

photo 4

Sheikh Murshid Mashuq Khaznawi, a prominent Syrian Kurdish religious leader, in a speech in Oslo, Norway calls for full solidarity and support for Yezidi Kurds.

Khaznawi condemns massacres ISIS commit against Yezidi Kurds and denounce its interpretation of the Islam

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( Video by Aldar Doskî )