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Iranian Revolutionary Guards Inaugurate Center for Recruiting Youth in Kirkuk | ASHARQ AL-AWSAT English Archive 2005 -2017
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Erbil- An Iranian-Kurdish opposing leader revealed that Kirkuk’s Governor, Najm al Din Kareem, has inaugurated Khomeini Cultural and Sports Center in Kirkuk, in the presence of Iranian Consul in Kurdistan, Murtada al-Abadi, on the occasion of Khomeini’s revolution anniversary.

The center is considered to be a base for recruiting Kirkuk’s youth to join the militias affiliated with Tehran, and it is associated to the Iranian Quds Force, which is supervised by Gen. Qassem Soleimani.

The Kurdish leader explained that the inauguration of this center comes within a group of projects and plans that Iran is implementing in order to control Kirkuk, then move to Mosul city, and finally reach Syria to facilitate transferring weapons and militants from Iran directly to Bashar al-Assad’s regime.

Hussein Yazdan, an official from the military flank of the Freedom Party of Kurdistan, told Asharq Al-Awsat that Khomeini Cultural and Sports Center is one of the institutions and centers that are affiliated to an Iranian Quds Force camp.

He added that Khomeini Center is a military intelligence base under sports and cultural cover that is used to recruit Kirkuk’s youth and a group of spies to be admitted later to administrative companies, newspapers, magazines and economic centers in Kurdistan.

He stated that Iran’s projects in Kirkuk aim at keeping this city away from Kurdistan’s region and preventing the referendum to determine its destiny within the draft of declaring the Kurdish state. He also said that Iran is working on including Kirkuk, which is considered a significant oil and security center, within the areas it has great influence on in Iraq, and controlling it militarily via Popular Mobilization Forces militia or any other militias it founds for this purpose.

Hussein Yazdan added that Iran is threatening Erbil, the capital of Kurdistan, and it is working on moving from Kirkuk towards Mosul; a step which gives it the absolute control over all the oil fields and the border with Syria, thus facilitating the transfer of militants and weapons from Iran to the Assad regime. This is what the Popular Mobilization Forces militias have been arranging by mobilizing their troops for so long near Kirkuk, he concluded.