Iraq´s Kurds Deny Hosting Israeli Intelligence Operatives (INN) ISRAEL NATIONAL NEWS) By Rachel Hirshfeld 05/13/12)
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The government of Iraq´s Kurdish region fired back on Saturday over
allegations by Iranian officials that Kurdistan was hosting members
of the Israeli intelligence, AFP reported.
In recent weeks, Iran´s consul in the regional capital of Arbil, Azim
Hosseini, said Israeli spies were using Kurdistan as a base to gather
information and operate against Iran. Kurdish authorities dismissed
the allegations as being "untrue."
"This is not the first time that Iranian officials are saying this
without presenting evidence or reasons," the Kurdish regional
government said in a statement.
"The government is not able to be quiet faced with these accusations
anymore, so we confirm to the public there are no centers or offices
of Israel in Kurdistan, and we deny this accusation," the statement
read. "This is an attempt to draw Kurdistan into the fight between
Israel and Iran, and we do not want to be part of this," it said.
On May 5, Hosseini alleged that Iranian security agencies had found
evidence that "Israelis are in Kurdistan, and they are working
"Israelis are working under different passports and names and
banners," he told Safil, a Kurdish weekly published in Arbil.
On April 21, Iranian MP Esmaeel Kosari told Al-Alam, an Iran-based
Arabic-language news channel, that Kurdistan and Azerbaijan "should
know that the presence of the Zionist regime on their soil will be
harmful to them."
"The neighbouring nations should not allow this regime to have any
activities against Iran," he said.
While Israel and Iraq do not maintain diplomatic relations, Kurdistan
does have a warmer history with Israel and a number of Kurdish
leaders have visited the Jewish state in past decades.
(IsraelNationalNews © 2012 05/13/12)
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