ASIA/IRAQ - New war winds on the Nineveh Plain

Tuesday, 17 October 2017 oriental churches   middle east   sectaniarism

Telkaif (Agenzia Fides) - The "Babylonian Brigades", formation of popular protection militias who also count Christian militias in their ranks, have told the Kurdish militia Peshmerga to abandon all areas of the Nineveh Plain under their control, receiving the rejection of military contingents that respond to the government of the autonomous region of Iraqi Kurdistan. In the past few days, the Peshmerga had arrested some members of Ryan al Keldani’s clan (Ryan "The Chaldean" in the photo), head of the so-called "Babylon Brigades". Kurdish sources reported that the Peshmerga deployed in the Nineveh Plain will respond militarily to all armed components that will try to cross the border of the areas they control.
The order of the "Babylonian Brigades" and the hypothesis of their attack on Peshmerga posts are just a symptom of the new conflicts that, after the Independent referendum of Kurdistan seem to loom over the vast North-Iraqi regions just liberated from the occupation or jihadist siege of the Islamic State (Daesh).
Among the "disputed areas" between the government of Baghdad and the independent Kurdistan forces, in addition to the oil region of Kirkuk, there is also the Nineveh Plain, an area of traditional roots of native Christian communities. The tensions between the "Babylonian Brigades" and the Kurdish Peshmerga also fuel concerns among Christians who had returned to their villages in the Nineveh Plain over the last few months, having lived long as refugees in the years when Mosul and a part of the province of Nineveh were in the hands of Daesh jihadists. Christian refugees who returned to their homes are afraid to see the Nineveh Plain again turned into a battle ground, this time between the Peshmerga Kurds opposed to the Iraqi army, or the "Babylonian Brigades and other forces of popular mobilization (mostly Shi'a) who took part in military operations against Daesh jihadists. (GV) (Agenzia Fides, 17/10/2017)