Erbil (IraqiNews.com) Retired Kurdistan Region President Masoud Barzani has suggested that Iraqi forces were behind the killing of a Kurdish photojournalist during the tensions that broke out following his resignation.
“The responsibility for the assassination of martyr Arkan Sharif, and tormenting the people of that region (Daqouq, south of Kirkuk) falls on the troops that have imposed themselves on the region in violation of the law and the constitution,” he said in a statement on Wednesday quoted by Kurdish Network Rudaw.
“Kurdistan TV photojournalist Arkan Sharif was assassinated on 29th/30th of October in Daqouq, which is under the control of the Popular Mobilization Forces, inside his house by masked and armed attackers,” said Barzani.
Barzani labelled Sharif’s assassination a “clear example of the chauvinistic approach which imposed itself with the power of the weapon and unjustly on Kurdish areas outside the regional government’s administration,”
Sharif was stabbed to death, according to news reports quoting security officials. His murder came as tensions flared after Barzani’s declaration last Sunday that he was not going to extend his term as president of Kurdistan after November 1st.
Iraqi federal troops and Popular Mobilization Forces took over Kurdish-held areas in Kirkuk, Diyala and Nineveh earlier this month in response to a referendum on independence from Iraq the Kurdish government held in September.