HPG commander denies claims that guerrillas attacked the peshmerga
HPG commander Haki Armanc denied claims that guerrillas attacked the Peshmerga: "We don't know how the Peshmerga fighters lost their lives. Several statements assume a Turkish airstrike."
Haki Armanc, one of the commanders of the People's Defense Forces (HPG) headquarters, called the KDP’s deployment of troops to the guerrilla area of Metîna irresponsible. The HPG never considered turning weapons against the peshmerga, he said.
Regarding the Turkish army's invasion of the Metîna, Zap and Avaşîn regions, which started on April 23, Armanc pointed to the guerrillas' resistance to the occupation of southern Kurdistan: "The Turkish state has been stalling for the last 44 days. It wanted to move in several areas and complete the occupation within a short time. It has not succeeded in doing so. The Kurdistan Freedom Guerrilla has confronted it as a human shield and inflicted heavy losses. The enemy's advance has been halted and it is suffering more losses every day. It lives in constant fear and is bogged down." However, he said, the guerrillas not only want to stop the advance of the Turkish army, but also to liberate the areas it has already taken.
The HPG commander called for an investigation into Saturday's explosion in Metîna and stated, "This is a very sad incident. We offer our condolences to the relatives of the peshmerga fighters who lost their lives in the incident and wish the injured a speedy recovery. Why did this happen, who is responsible? This must be clarified." Early Saturday morning, he said, a military column consisting of fifty vehicles moved into the area where the guerrillas have been stationed for 25 years. "Who planned this and who gave the order? These are the fundamental questions. The forces that moved in were not to clean up just one place, as has been claimed. It was a large unit with heavy weapons; there were also excavators. Apparently, the plan is to build roads and capture guerrilla territory. We can state that this incident should not have happened. If we had been notified beforehand and talks had taken place, a solution could have been found. However, this has not been done.
It was known that our units are in the area. The Turkish state has launched an occupation operation and our forces in Metîna are on alert. There is information that the Turkish state also wants to advance in the area in question. Sending heavily armed units there in this situation without prior notification was a big mistake. It was irresponsible. Our people should know that those who sent these troops there are responsible for the incident."
Armanc further stated, "We do not know how the peshmerga fighters lost their lives. Several statements indicate that they were bombed by the Turkish state. The vehicle that was hit looks like either something exploded inside or a drone strike took place. Drones were flying over the area at the time of the incident. We are investigating the incident. However, what is most important is why it happened. Such a situation must not be repeated. What we know so far is that the Turkish state was very pleased."
Guerrilla commander Haki Armanc stressed that the HPG wanted to avoid an armed confrontation with the Peshmerga at all costs. "The allegations that the guerrillas attacked or ambushed the peshmerga are baseless. They are lies." For the moment, he said, the situation is calm, but the situation is extremely tense.