Thursday, October 4, 2018

Kurdish Group to Engage More With DC Think Tanks

Here is more from Al-Monitor:

An Iranian Kurdish rebel group is the latest faction to jump on Washington’s anti-Tehran bandwagon.
The Komala Party of Iranian Kurdistan, an armed group with communist origins exiled in northern Iraq, registered with the Justice Department late last month as a lobby aiming to “establish solid and durable relations” with the Donald Trump administration. The registration hints at a more public role for a group that has left a digital track record of foreign advocacy on Capitol Hill dating back several years.
Salah Bayaziddi, a Canadian citizen who identifies as a journalist and doctoral candidate in federal filings, will lead the effort on a volunteer basis, writing op-eds, meeting US officials and engaging Washington think tanks. In a September filing with the Justice Department, Komala leader Abdullah Mohtadi said the group “seeks to represent the human rights of Iranian citizens and promotes the democratic representation of minority voices in Iran.” Komala has a track record of insurgent activity against the Iranian government.

These days, nearly every type of foreign entity is engaging with Washington more, which inevitably means that think tanks will see more activity with these foreign entities and likely score big contracts to host events, write reports, and engage with the US government on behalf of those entities.