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Iraqi Kurdish politician survives assassination attempt

Tensions have been high for months between the Kurdistan Democratic Party and the Patriotic Union of Kurdistan, though recent dialogue may have calmed the situation.
Karwan Gaznay

A member of the Kurdistan Region of Iraq’s parliament said he survived an assassination attempt on Monday, though a Kurdish military commander later disputed the account. The ordeal occurred amid tensions and dialogue between the two main Kurdish parties in northern Iraq.

What happened: Karwan Gaznay, a member of the Kurdistan parliament for the Patriotic Union of Kurdistan (PUK), said in a tweet on Tuesday that he "survived an assassination attempt” the night prior. His driver was injured and they are “waiting for the reaction of the government,” per the tweet.

The incident took place in the town of Koya located in Erbil province. It is under investigation, according to the PUK-affiliated Esta news agency.

The Kurdish news outlet NRT, which is affiliated with the opposition New Generation party, reported that the shooting occurred around 10 p.m. local time on Monday at a checkpoint manned by Kurdish internal security forces known as Asayish. 

NRT later reported on Wednesday that Zana Khalid, a commander in the region's peshmerga forces, disputed Gaznay's account of the incident. Khalid, an affiliate of the Kurdistan Democratic Party (KDP), said the confrontation occurred when Gaznay's vehicle crashed into his own vehicle and Gaznay's driver began hurling insults. 

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