PH envoy meets with Peshmerga leader in Erbil, Iraq
SAN FRANCISCO — An official of the Philippine Embassy in Baghdad paid a courtesy visit early this week on Peshmerga commander Sirwan Barzani at his base outside Erbil to get his assessment of the regional security situation. Erbil home to more than 2,000 Filipinos.
Chargé d’Affaires Elmer G. Cato visited Barzani, one of Kurdistan’s leading business leaders, who led a force of 150 poorly armed Peshmerga in preventing Islamic State fighters, during the jihadist blitzkrieg across Iraq in 2014, from rolling into the regional capital.
Barzani’s force was also in charge of defending the Gwer-Makmour sector, the most active along the 1,000-kilometer frontline with the Islamic State, until last month’s offensive that drove militants back to Mosul.