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WikiLeaks: 2006-06-07: 06BAGHDAD1911: Codel Blunt Discusses PKK and Turkey with Kurdistan Regional Government Officials in Erbil

by WikiLeaks. 06BAGHDAD1911: June 07, 2006.

Posted: Thursday, October 04, 2012 at 04:27 PM UT


Viewing cable 06BAGHDAD1911, CODEL BLUNT DISCUSSES PKK AND TURKEY WITH

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Reference ID Created Released Classification Origin
06BAGHDAD1911 2006-06-07 04:54 2011-08-30 01:44 CONFIDENTIAL Embassy Baghdad
VZCZCXRO0229
PP RUEHBC RUEHDE RUEHIHL RUEHKUK
DE RUEHGB #1911 1580454
ZNY CCCCC ZZH
P 070454Z JUN 06
FM AMEMBASSY BAGHDAD
TO RUEHC/SECSTATE WASHDC PRIORITY 4915
INFO RUCNRAQ/IRAQ COLLECTIVE
RHEHNSC/WHITE HOUSE NSC WASHINGTON DC
RUEKJCS/SECDEF WASHDC
C O N F I D E N T I A L BAGHDAD 001911 
 
SIPDIS 
 
SIPDIS 
 
E.O. 12958: DECL: 06/05/2026 
TAGS: PGOV TU IR IZ
SUBJECT: CODEL BLUNT DISCUSSES PKK AND TURKEY WITH 
KURDISTAN REGIONAL GOVERNMENT OFFICIALS IN ERBIL 
 
 
Classified By: Political Counselor Margaret Scobey for Reasons 1.4 (B) 
and (D) 
 
1. (C) SUMMARY:  In a series of meetings in the Kurdistan 
Region on May 31, CODEL Blunt met with Kurdistan Regional 
Government (KRG) President Masud Barzani, Prime Minister 
Nechirvan Barzani, and the Speaker and Deputy Speaker of the 
Kurdistan National Assembly (KNA) Adnan Mufti and Kamal 
Kirkuki.  Both Nechirvan Barzani and Masud Barzani discussed 
the PKK and Turkey.  Nechirvan expressed a more nuanced 
position than Masud, reflecting an apparent pragmatic 
sensitivity to Ankara's views.  The Kurdistan National 
Assembly (KNA) leaders asked the CODEL for U.S. support to 
ensure that Kirkuk would become part of the Kurdistan region, 
and claimed that the Kurdish constitution guaranteed rights 
for all minority ethnic groups who lived in Kirkuk.  SUMMARY. 
 
------------------ 
Turkey and the PKK 
------------------ 
 
2. (C) In a series of meetings in the Kurdistan Region on May 
31, CODEL Blunt met with Kurdistan Regional Government (KRG) 
President Masud Barzani, Prime Minister Nechirvan Barzani, 
and the Speaker and Deputy Speaker of the Kurdistan National 
Assembly (KNA) Adnan Mufti and Kamal Kirkuki.  Acknowledging 
the nearly 3,000 Kurdistan Worker's Party (PKK) members 
living in camps in Northern Iraq, KRG Prime Minister 
Nechirvan Barzani stated that no one has harmed the larger 
Kurdish cause like the PKK, whose acts of terrorism have 
plagued both Iraq and Turkey.  According to PM Barzani, 
roughly 3500 people have been killed, wounded, or disabled 
due to the PKK.  However, he continued, this is a political 
problem ) Turkey did not understand this issue did not have 
a military solution.  The real solution to this problem, PM 
Barzani continued, is for Turkey to step forward and offer 
amnesty and recognize the Kurds' right to existence.  PM 
Barzani claimed that the PKK is ready to accept amnesty and 
the chance to live in peace within the current borders of 
Turkey ) without demanding a separate nation for Turkish 
Kurds. 
 
3. (C) In a separate conversation with the CODEL later in the 
day, President Masud Barzani emphasized the need to maintain 
good relations with Turkey, for both economic and political 
reasons.  President Barzani stressed that the PKK's acts of 
terrorism affected not just Iraq but also the millions of 
Kurds living in Turkey.  He said the PKK issue would resolve 
itself if the Turkish Government is truly ready for peace. 
President Barzani claimed that he had advised Ankara in the 
past to adopt a peaceful solution, including both amnesty for 
all but the most hardened PKK terrorists and recognizing the 
need for the Kurds to "express their democratic will." 
 
---------------- 
Resolving Kirkuk 
---------------- 
 
4. (C) In a separate meeting with KNA Speaker Adnan Mufti and 
Deputy Speaker Kamal Kirkuki, Kirkuki asked the CODEL for 
U.S. support to ensure that Kirkuk would be part of the 
Kurdistan Region.  Kirkuki claimed that the rights of all 
groups ) Turkoman, Assyrian, and Shebak ) would be 
guaranteed under the Kurdish constitution.  Later, President 
Barzani echoed Kirkuki's comments, stating that Kirkuk's 
eventual "reunification" with Kurdistan region was already 
implied in the Iraqi Constitution. 
 
------- 
Comment 
------- 
 
5. (C) While the Kurds' stance on Kirkuk is familiar, the 
more interesting story here is the slight ) but significant 
) differences between PM Barzani and President Barzani's 
positions on the PKK and Turkey.  Nechirvan Barzani 
increasing seems as if he is being groomed to take over for 
Masud Barzani in the line of succession as leader of the 
Kurdistan Democratic Party (KDP).  His more nuanced position 
than Masud's, and his explicit assurance of the need to 
maintain the "current borders of Turkey" indicate a pragmatic 
sensitivity to Ankara's views, paired with a need to resolve 
a politically sensitive topic with a major economic partner. 
KHALILZAD

 



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