US, Kurdish officials react to Wednesday's attacks in Erbil
Kurdish security forces stand guard near Erbil International Airport adjacent to a US military base in Erbil, Kurdistan Region, Iraq, April 14,2021. Photo/Dyar Husen/Zhyan News Network
Zhyan News Network
SULAIMANI – The United States said on Thursday (April 15) it was outraged by attacks on the Kurdistan Region’s Erbil airport and a Turkish military base in Bashik.
“Outraged by reports of attacks in the Iraqi Kurdistan Region,” US State Department spokesman Ned Price said in a tweet.
A drone dropped explosives near US forces stationed at Erbil airport late on Wednesday, no casualties reported.
A separate rocket attack occurred around the same time at Turkey’s military base in Bashik which according to the Turkish defense ministry killed a Turkish soldier.
“The Iraqi people have suffered for far too long from this kind of violence and violation of their sovereignty,” said Ned Price.
It said that the groups behind the attack targeted the peace and stability of the country.
“It is important to take the continuation of these attacks seriously. The Kurdistan Region and Iraq’s Federal Government must strengthen coordination and cooperation, with the support of the International Coalition, in order to confront the groups that are behind such attacks.”
A group that Western and some Iraqi officials say is aligned with Iran praised the attack, but did not explicitly claim it.
Prime Minister of the Kurdistan Regional Government (KRG) Masrour Barzani said in a tweet
that he held phone calls with Iraqi PM and Parliament Speaker reaffirming “shared goal to hold these lawless groups accountable.”
“I assure the people of Kurdistan that the members of the terror group behind this attack will be held responsible for their actions -mb.”
KRG Prime Minister condemned the attacks and said that he will hold talks in the coming days with the Iraqi and international partners to withdraw armed groups which are not operating within the official Iraqi security forces from the Kurdistan Region.
It was the first known attack carried out by an unmanned aerial drone against US forces in Erbil, amid a steady stream of rocket attacks on bases hosting US forces and the embassy in Baghdad that Washington blames on Iran-backed militias.
One civilian contractor and a citizen were killed and eight others were injured in a rocket attack on US-led forces in Erbil on Monday night (February 15).