Iraqi Kurdish authorities yesterday denied handing over Dalia Muslim, niece of a former senior Democratic Union Party (PYD) leader, to Turkey as claimed by her family, RT reported.
The Interior Ministry in Iraq’s Kurdistan Regional Government denied the accusation made by Dalia’s family that Erbil had handed her over to Turkey, stressing that the reports were fake and misguided.
The statement said that Dalia Mahmoud Muslim is the niece of Saleh Muslim, longtime co-chair of the PYD, the political arm of the main Syrian Kurdish militia, the People’s Protection Units (YPG).
“She had left the Women’s Protection Units [the YPG’s female equivalent] and started a relationship with a [Kurdistan Workers’ Party] PKK fighter known as Toul Hadan, living in Bitlis,” the statement said. Bitlis is a Turkish area.
“Both of them decided to leave the PKK,” the statement said, and Dalia travelled “secretly” to Turkey to hand herself over to Turkish authorities.
Dalia’s father wrote on Facebook on Saturday that he held Iraqi Kurdish authorities responsible “for her kidnapping or for handing her over to Turkish intelligence”.
He claimed that any comments attributed to her were “false” and obtained “under pressure”.
Reporting Anadolu, RT said 21-year-old Dalia, had “handed herself in” to Turkish security forces on 15 July in a southern province of Turkey.