Shootout between ‘allies’ underscores Iraq divisions

In Tuz Khurmatu, a gun battle between Shia militia and Kurdish fighters – nominal partners in the fight against IS militants – highlights the ethnic and sectarian tensions pulling northern Iraq apart.
Shia militiamen brandish their weapons in the town of Tuz Khurmatu on Aug. 31, 2014. (STRINGER/Reuters)

TUZ KHURMATU - Ethnic and sectarian tensions are approaching a breaking point in the volatile northern city of Tuz Khurmatu, following an Oct. 3 gun battle between Shia militia and Kurdish fighters.

The shootout, which injured at least four people, highlighted not only a rivalry between Kurds and Shia, but also the widespread mistrust and mistreatment of Sunnis. It was another worrying sign that violence and sectarianism will continue to plague Iraq even after the extremist militants of the so-called Islamic State (IS) are dislodged from the country.

This content is for registered users. Please login to continue.
If you are not a registered user, you may purchase a subscription or sign up for a free trial.