US embassy cable - 01ANKARA3476 (original version)

NORTHERN IRAQ: ISLAMIC JIHAD PARTY FORMED AFTER SPLIT WITHIN ISLAMIC UNION MOVEMENT OF KURDISTAN (original version)

Identifier: 01ANKARA3476
Wikileaks: View 01ANKARA3476 at Wikileaks.org
Origin: Embassy Ankara
Created: 2001-05-31 14:13:00
Classification: CONFIDENTIAL
Tags: PREL PHUM PTER MARR ETTC UNSC IZ TU
Redacted: This cable was redacted by Wikileaks. [Show redacted version] [Compare redacted and unredacted version]
O 311413Z MAY 01
FM AMEMBASSY ANKARA
TO SECSTATE WASHDC IMMEDIATE 3754
INFO IRAQ COLLECTIVE IMMEDIATE
EUROPEAN POLITICAL COLLECTIVE IMMEDIATE
SECDEF WASHDC//USDP:PDUSDP/USDP/ISA:EUR/ISA:NESA//
JOINT STAFF WASHDC//J-3/J-5// IMMEDIATE
CTF NORTHERN WATCH INCIRLIK AB TU//CC/CS//
JAC MOLESWORTH RAF MOLESWORTH UK
USCINCEUR VAIHINGEN GE//ECJ3/ECJ5/ECPOLAD//
USCINCCENT MACDILL AFB FL//POLAD//
C O N F I D E N T I A L ANKARA 003476 
 
DEPT. FOR NEA, IO, S/CT, NEA/NGA, AND EUR/SE 
LONDON FOR SUTPHIN 
PARIS FOR O'FRIEL 
VIENNA FOR DCM DEUTSCH 
 
E.O. 12958: DECL:5/30/11 
TAGS: PREL, PHUM, PTER, MARR, ETTC, UNSC, IZ, TU 
SUBJECT: NORTHERN IRAQ: ISLAMIC JIHAD PARTY FORMED AFTER 
SPLIT WITHIN ISLAMIC UNION MOVEMENT OF KURDISTAN 
 
(U) CLASSIFIED BY POL-MIL COUNSELOR STUART BROWN, REASONS 
1.5 B/D. 
 
1. (C) ACCORDING TO PATRIOTIC UNION OF KURDISTAN (PUK) 
ANKARA REP BAHROS GALALI, ON MAY 30 A SPLIT IN THE ISLAMIC 
UNION MOVEMENT OF KURDISTAN (IUMK) RESULTED IN MULLAH ALI 
BAPIR FOUNDING HIS OWN GROUP WHICH HE HAS NAMED THE ISLAMIC 
JIHAD PARTY.  BAPIR IS A RIVAL OF IUKM LEADER MULLAH ALI 
ABDULAZIZ.  BOTH LEADERS ARE BASED IN THE HALABJA DISTRICT, 
HAVE ARMED MILITIA UNDER THEIR COMMAND AND RECEIVE SUPPORT 
FROM IRAN.  WHILE THE HALABJA DISTRICT HAS FOR SOME TIME 
BEEN CONTROLLED BY THE IUMK, ACCORDING TO GALALI, ISLAMIC 
JIHAD ON THE NIGHT OF MAY 30 SUCCEEDED IN TAKING THE 
VILLAGES OF KURMAL AND ANAB WITHOUT A FIGHT.  GALALI 
CONTACTED US WITH THIS INFORMATION ON MAY 31 ON PUK LEADER 
JALAL TALABANI'S INSTRUCTION. 
 
2.(C) THE PUK IS CONCERNED THAT THE ISLAMIST SPLIT AND GRAB 
OF TERRITORY MAY LEAD TO FIGHTING BETWEEN THE ARMED RIVAL 
FACTIONS, THOUGH NONE IS YET REPORTED.  TALABANI IS ALSO 
WORRIED THAT IRAN MAY TRY TO USE THE EXISTENCE OF TWO 
ISLAMIST FACTIONS HOLDING TERRITORY IN THE BORDER AREA AS A 
PRETEXT TO CUT OFF TALABANI'S ROAD ACCESS TO IRAN BY 
ENCOURAGING ISLAMIC JIHAD TO TAKE THE AREA AROUND PINJUIN. 
(THE TWO MAIN ROADS FROM THE PUK AREA INTO IRAN RUN THROUGH 
PINJUIN AND HALABJA RESPECTIVELY.)  IN A FURTHER 
COMPLICATION FOR THE PUK, TWO PUK "MINISTERS" AND TWO 
"DEPUTY MINISTERS" ARE ISLAMISTS FROM THE IUMK AND IT IS 
NOT CLEAR WITH WHICH FACTION THEY WILL ALIGN THEMSELVES. 
 
3. (C) AS IS OFTEN THE CASE WITH DEVELOPMENTS IN NORTHERN 
IRAQ, OUR INFORMATION IS LIMITED AND HAS NOT BEEN CONFIRMED 
BY ANY OTHER SOURCE.  WE WILL REPORT ANY FURTHER DETAILS WE 
ARE ABLE TO LEARN SEPTEL. 
 
JEFFREY 

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