Iraqi Kurdistan has in past months increasingly become an arena for regional states looking to settle scores with exiled dissidents. Iranian and Turkish attacks are no longer limited to the targeting of border regions with artillery, rockets and missiles to root out rebel groups. The strikes have expanded into the Kurdistan region’s skies through unmanned aerial vehicles (UAVs), which seem to have become Iran and Turkey’s preferred means to liquidate opponents—at low cost, and with the ability to evade responsibility for collateral damage.
The situation has partly been enabled by the absence of air defense systems capable of deterring drones in the semi-autonomous region, which has long been a safe haven for many dissidents and political refugees.
The recent uptick in drone strikes has sparked worry and fear among locals, raising anxieties that UAV operations could impact the future of Iraqi Kurdistan. Earlier this month, Rizgar Mohammad, a member of the Kurdistan region’s region’s parliament, went as far as stating that he no longer...
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