SULAIMANI (ESTA) — Kurdistan Regional Government (KRG) Prime Minister Masrour Barzani denounced attacks on tourists during New Year holidays in the Kurdistan Region.
Two buses carrying tourists from central and southern Iraq were attacked by a group of people in Erbil and Akre town on Thursday and Saturday.
Security forces detained 11 people over attacking the tourists who visited Erbil to spend the New Year holidays, according to Erbil governorate.
The directorate of tourism in Akre said the attackers would be brought to justice.
“It is profoundly unfortunate that a small band of troublemakers have in recent days assaulted tourists visiting the Kurdistan Region from Baghdad and other Iraqi provinces for the New Year celebrations,” the KRG premier said in a statement on Saturday (January 2).
“I condemn these heinous assaults in the strongest terms. They are contrary to our standards and values,” he added.
Barzani further said the Kurdistan Region continues to be a safe haven for millions of refugees and displaced persons from Iraq and neighboring countries and welcomes tourists across the world without discrimination.
“Every year, Kurdistan embraces hundreds of thousands of tourists. The assaults in recent days are wholly at odds with our well-known culture of peaceful coexistence and tolerance, and I reaffirm our commitment to hold accountable to the fullest extent of the law any individual or side trying to undermine it.”
Tourists from central and southern Iraqi cities visit the Kurdistan Region during New Year and other holidays.