The Asayish Izidkhan serves as the internal security force wing of the 'Autonomous Administration' in Sinjar and was set up in 2016 following the campaigns of the Sinjar Resistance Units, which is a prominent formation in the Sinjar area that emerged in 2014 as a defence force for the Yezidi population against the Islamic State's attempted genocide of the Yezidis. The Sinjar Resistance Units was set up by the 'Autonomous Administration' for the Sinjar area amid the errors by the prior authorities ruling over Sinjar and the absence of another viable force to protect the Yezidis, as the Iraqi army had been largely routed from large parts of Ninawa province and the Peshmerga affiliated with the Kurdistan Democratic Party (KDP) had fled Sinjar.
After the liberation of Sinjar, the Asayish Izidkhan was set up as an internal security force to provide safety and security to the people of Sinjar. The Sinjar Resistance Units and the Asayish Izidkhan work alongside the 'Autonomous Administration' in the Sinjar area that provides services to the locals, while an individual called Fahad Hamid continues to serve as the de facto mayor of the Sinjar area.
However, an agreement signed between the government in Baghdad and the Kurdistan Regional Government last year is intended to appoint a new year and ensure the deployment of more regular government forces in Sinjar to manage local security. Forces from the Iraqi army and federal police have since deployed in the Sinjar area, and parts of the Sinjar Resistance Units' forces have been incorporated officially into the Hashd under the name of Regiment 80. While the Sinjar Resistance Units and withdrew from some of their positions in the Sinjar area and coordinated those moves with the Iraqi army, the Iraqi army has since made demands for the Sinjar Resistance Units to engage in further withdrawals from its positions as well as withdrawal of the Asayish Izidkhan from its positions. These demands come in the context of seeking to implement the clause of the Sinjar agreement that stipulates ending the presence of the Kurdistan Workers' Party (PKK) and its affiliates in the area, though the Sinjar Resistance Units and Asayish Izidkhan deny a PKK connection/affiliation.
To discuss more the current situation in Sinjar, I conducted an interview with Ali Shengali, a commander in the Asayish Izidkhan
Q: What is the truth of the implementation of the agreement between Baghdad and Arbil regarding the Sinjar district?
A: In truth this is not an agreement between Baghdad and Arbil but rather is a personal agreement between Mustafa al-Kadhimi and the Kurdistan Democratic Party. This was done without the consultation of the Yezidis in the area, and we completely reject the agreement.
We do not have a problem with the Iraqi army, the internal police or any of the forces present in Sinjar. Our Iraq is one and our enemy is one and our geography is one.
Q: And who is your enemy?
A: The Dawa'esh and the Turkey. The Dawa'esh have not come to an end but have continued to launch attacks on barracks and positions of the Iraqi army and Hashd Sha'abi. As for Turkey, it is the one that established Da'esh and even now supports it: these words do not merely come from us but are established among all.
Q: What is the nature of the current problems with the Iraqi army? The army is demanding you to leave what positions exactly?
A: The army is demanding our removal, but the problem is where would we go? I speak to you here as an ordinary citizen. Where would those who have defended Iraq and Sinjar and have offered hundreds of martyrs go? We are all sons of the area.
Q: So are you negotiating with the Iraqi army?
A: Yes. We wish to stay as an official force within the Iraqi constitutional frameworks.
Q: What would you think of the prospect of the Peshmerga's return to Sinjar?
A: How many genocides did the people of Mount Sinjar face in their history?
A: Yes, and the return of the Peshmerga to Mount Sinjar will be the beginning of the 75th genocide.
Q: What is your position on Fahad Hamid's role as the mayor of Sinjar, noting that there is another mayor of Sinjar (Mahama Khalil) present in Duhok?
A: We support Fahad as the mayor of Sinjar as he works for the interests of Sinjar and not his personal interests unlike the previous mayor and administration.