Iraq: Armed Forces Integration Process Stumbles: The Amalgamation of Kurdish Troops into the Armed Forces of Iraq Has Hit a Problem
Kutschera, Chris, The Middle East
AMALGAMATION OF THE ARMED FORCES was one of the last steps of the unification of the two rival administrations in Iraqi Kurdistan and by far the most difficult, only 12 years after the end of the civil war that raged between Massoud Barzani's Kurdistan Democratic Party (KDP) and Jalal Talabani's Patriotic Union of Kurdistan (PUK) from 1994 to 1998 and claimed thousands of victims.
The first step was achieved in April 2009 with the unification of the Ministry of Peshmergas (the Kurdish fighters, or literally "those who face death"). Sheikh Jaffar Sheikh Mustafa (PUK) was appointed Minister of Peshmergas, while Major Jemal (KDP) became Chief of Staff, and Jaber Al Yawal (PUK), Secretary General of the Ministry.
The second step came nine months later with the formation of four unified brigades of 3005 Kurdistan guards, each composed of peshmergas and officers from both parties. The officers--about 200 for each brigade--come from the ranks of the Kurdish forces and from two military colleges in Zakho and Qala Tchwalan, which recruit …
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Publication information: Article title: Iraq: Armed Forces Integration Process Stumbles: The Amalgamation of Kurdish Troops into the Armed Forces of Iraq Has Hit a Problem. Contributors: Kutschera, Chris - Author. Magazine title: The Middle East. Issue: 419 Publication date: February 2011. Page number: 26+. © 2009 IC Publications Ltd. COPYRIGHT 2011 Gale Group.
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