Drone attack on Erbil due to ‘security vacuum’ between Iraqi and Kurdish forces: minister

File – KRG Minister of Interior Rebar Ahmed speaks in a press conference. (Anadolu Agency)

SULAIMANI (ESTA) — Kurdistan Regional Government (KRG) Minister of Interior Rebar Ahmed said on Tuesday that the drone attack on Erbil airport was due to a “security vacuum” between Iraqi and Peshmerga forces.

An explosives-laden drone targeted a base hosting U.S.-led Coalition troops at Erbil airport on April 14.

Coalition spokesman Col. Wayne Marotto said the drone landed on a storage hanger at Erbil airport base and confirmed there were no injuries, according to AP.

“Erbil airport was attacked by a drone, which is a dangerous development, and investigation into the attack is ongoing,” Ahmed said in a press conference.

“The security vacuum between the Peshmerga forces and the Iraqi military has given a good opportunity for terrorists and groups that work as terrorists,” he added.

The interior minister further said no one had been arrested over the attack.

On April 16, the United States, France, Britain, Germany and Italy condemned “in the strongest terms” the drone attack on the airport, saying such attacks would not be tolerated.

Regarding the killing of a woman in Erbil, the Kurdish interior minister said police and the security forces had launched investigations to find perpetrators.

On Friday, a 21-year-old woman was killed by her ex-husband in Erbil. Her family said she was shot with “13 bullets in front of her mother”.

The woman who got married when she was 13 years old has three children, according to her family.

Prime Minister Masrour Barzani said in a tweet on Saturday that he was “appalled” by the killing of the woman, saying “there is no honor in ‘honor’ killing; it is murder, sets us back, and must end”.

“Our society will never truly thrive if half of the population can’t live freely without fear of violence. In this cabinet, we have increased resources to shelters for vulnerable women seeking support and protection, and I’m committed to doing more to help,” he added.

General Secretary of the Kurdistan Region’s High Council of Women Affairs Khanzad Ahmed said women should have security and stability just like any other individual in the community.

“These cases are serious cases … they have risen and must be reduced. If they are repeated, the law must be sovereign,” Ahmed told Esta Media Network on Sunday.

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