Iraq, Iran join hands against war on IS as Kurd dispute heats up

Syria. The Kurdish female militia that took part in freeing the northern Syrian city of Raqqa from the Islamic State group said on Thursday it will continue the fight to liberate women from the extremists' brutal rule. AP/PTI
Iraqi Prime Minister Haider al-Abadi held talks with key ally Iran on Thursday as his forces launched an offensive against the Islamic State group's last bastion in the country.

Independently of Washington, Tehran has poured significant resources into the war against the jihadists in Iraq, providing weapons, advice and training to the Shiite militias which dominate the key paramilitary Hashed al-Shaabi (Popular Mobilisation) force.

Abadi held morning talks with First Vice President Eshagh Jahangiri ahead of meetings with other top leaders.

Buoyed by the success of the campaign against the jihadists, who have now been virtually confined to a stretch of the Euphrates valley straddling the border with Syria, Abadi has been on a regional tour that on Wednesday saw him in Ankara.

High on the agenda of his talks has been his bitter dispute with the Kurds over the spoils of the fightback against IS.

Kurdish leaders held a referendum on independence last month to the fury not only of Baghdad but also of neighbouring Iran and Turkey which have long been fearful of anything that might stoke separatist sentiment among their own large Kurdish minorities.

In a statement issued by his office in Baghdad on Thursday, Abadi said that an offer by Kurdish leaders to freeze the outcome of the vote did not go far enough. He said only complete annulment would suffice.

Dear Reader,

Business Standard has always strived hard to provide up-to-date information and commentary on developments that are of interest to you and have wider political and economic implications for the country and the world. Your encouragement and constant feedback on how to improve our offering have only made our resolve and commitment to these ideals stronger. Even during these difficult times arising out of Covid-19, we continue to remain committed to keeping you informed and updated with credible news, authoritative views and incisive commentary on topical issues of relevance.

We, however, have a request.

As we battle the economic impact of the pandemic, we need your support even more, so that we can continue to offer you more quality content. Our subscription model has seen an encouraging response from many of you, who have subscribed to our online content. More subscription to our online content can only help us achieve the goals of offering you even better and more relevant content. We believe in free, fair and credible journalism. Your support through more subscriptions can help us practise the journalism to which we are committed.

Support quality journalism and subscribe to Business Standard.

Digital Editor

Business Standard is now on Telegram.
For insightful reports and views on business, markets, politics and other issues, subscribe to our official Telegram channel