Barzani be­gins talks on form­ing new KRG cab­i­net

In a sig­nif­i­cant re­mark, Barzani said that his party will not veto any re­quest from the po­lit­i­cal par­ties and would not ac­cept any veto from oth­ers

The Kurdish Globe - - FRONT PAGE -

Nechir­van Barzani, deputy KDP leader and head of his party's com­mit­tee ne­go­ti­at­ing on form­ing the new KRG cab­i­net, and Gor­ran leader Noshir­wan Mustafa speak dur­ing a press con­fer­ence in Su­laimani on Mon­day Novem­ber 18, 2013.

Al­most af­ter two months on from the Kur­dis­tan par­lia­men­tary elec­tions of Septem­ber 21, Nechir­van Barzani, deputy leader of the Kur­dis­tan Demo­cratic Party (KDP) and head of the KDP com­mit­tee ne­go­ti­at­ing the for­ma­tion of the new cab­i­net, has started talks with the al­lied and op­po­si­tion par­ties that won votes in the par­lia­men­tary elec­tion. Talks be­gan on Mon­day, Novem­ber 18, to form the eighth Kur­dis­tan Re­gional Gov­ern­ment (KRG) cab­i­net.

Barzani vis­ited his party’s strate­gic and tra­di­tional ally, the Pa­tri­otic Union of Kur­dis­tan (PUK), which is led by Jalal Tal­a­bani (cur­rently in hos­pi­tal in Ger­many af­ter a stroke), in Su­laimaniya on Novem­ber 18.

He held a meet­ing with the PUK ne­go­ti­a­tion com­mit­tee led by Barham Salih, the sec­ond deputy to the PUK’s gen­eral sec­re­tary and a po­lit­i­cal fig­ure who is known to be a re­formist and some­one who is very close to the West.

Barzani and Salih held a press con­fer­ence af­ter their meet­ing in which they stressed that the eighth cab­i­net would most prob­a­bly be a broad-based all-party cab­i­net.

Barzani said: “I think the KDP and PUK have been a pow­er­ful al­liance in re­cent years in the po­lit­i­cal the­atre of Kur­dis­tan. We have achieved a good deal for our na­tion.”

A new era is now upon us, Barzani said af­ter the par­lia­men­tary elec­tions. The deputy KDP leader said his party is “pleased” that the PUK would be tak­ing part in the new cab­i­net.

“All the po­lit­i­cal par­ties can take part in the eighth cab­i­net on the ba­sis of the re­sults of the Kur­dish par­lia­men­tary elec­tions,” said Barzani.

Re­gard­ing the re­cent dis­putes over the le­git­i­macy of the Su­lai- maniya’s gov­er­nor post, Barzani de­clared: “At this mo­ment, we do not want the cur­rent gov­er­nor to be changed.”

Re­gard­ing the date of the up­com­ing Kur­dis­tan pro­vin­cial coun­cil elec­tions, Barzani an­nounced that the two par­ties have reached an agree­ment to con­duct the elec­tions on April 30, 201, in par­al­lel with the Iraqi par­lia­men­tary elec­tions.

“There is no guar­an­tee that the po­lit­i­cal par­ties will not with­draw from the new cab­i­net; rather, it is a guar­an­tee is the sense of work­ing to­gether,” Barzani said at the press con­fer­ence.

“We are de­lighted to wel­come Mr. Barzani and his del­e­ga­tion to Su­laimaniya. We talked about the for­ma­tion of the new cab­i­net very frankly. The PUK will most likely take part in the next cab­i­net to help the gov­ern­ment ben­e­fit the most from the op­por­tu­ni­ties now avail­able for our na­tion. We will work to­gether to im­ple­ment the re­forms that our peo­ple are ex­pect­ing from us,” said Salih.

Salih fur­ther stated that his party wants to play a gen­uine and ac­tive role in the new cab­i­net, adding that his party has as­sured the KDP that it will con­firm its com­mit­ment to the Strate­gic Agree­ment, which was a ma­jor rea­son in bring­ing the com­plex pe­riod of the civil war to a close.

The two par­ties know that a po­lit­i­cal change is emerg­ing, Salih said, fol­low­ing the par­lia­men­tary elec­tions. “We must take the change into con­sid­er­a­tion and strive to strengthen our al­liance to make Kur­dis­tan’s po­si­tion much stronger.”

He added that he hopes the other par­ties sup­port Barzani in form­ing the new cab­i­net, which is ev­i­dence of our na­tional unity.

KDP-Change Move­ment talks

Fol­low­ing his meet­ing with the PUK, Barzani vis­ited the main head­quar­ters of the Change Move­ment (CM), lo­cally known as Gor­ran. Barzani and CM leader Naw­shir­wan Mustafa, who broke away from Tal­a­bani’s PUK in 2007, held a press con­fer­ence af­ter their meet­ing.

At the be­gin­ning of the con­fer­ence, Mustafa said that the meet­ing was “pos­i­tive”.

“We dis­cussed the for­ma­tion of the new cab­i­net and hold many views in com­mon which could form the ba­sis of our agree­ment over the next four years,” said Mustafa, who also led the CM ne­go­ti­a­tion com­mit­tee.

Barzani con­firmed Mustafa’s speech and said that: “I be­lieve that our opin­ions are close to those of the CM and that we have a good deal in com­mon.” KDP-KIU talks One day later, on Novem­ber 20, Barzani and his del­e­ga­tion vis­ited the Er­bil head­quar­ters of the Kurd- is­tan Is­lamic Union (KIU), which won 10 par­lia­men­tary seats.

The head of the KIU com­mit­tee, Mo­hammed Faraj, and Barzani held a press con­fer­ence fol­low­ing the meet­ing.

At the con­fer­ence, Barzani said, it was clear that the KIU had no “crip­pling con­di­tions” ahead of the talks.

Re­gard­ing the is­sue of the dis­tri­bu­tion of posts in the new cab­i­net, Barzani de­clared that: “Our dis­agree­ment is not over posts; rather, we want to agree on a com­mon agenda, which would en­sure the next gov­ern­ment is a gov­ern­ment based on part­ner­ship.”

Faraj said that Barzani’s visit was very pos­i­tive. He added that his party had not de­cided whether to take part in the cab­i­net yet. “To­day’s meet­ing was mostly to un­der­stand each other.”

He also de­clared that the KIU would de­cide whether to par­tic­i­pate in the cab­i­net in its next meet­ings.

KDP-KIG Talks

Barzani vis­ited the main head­quar­ters of the Kur­dis­tan Is­lamic Group (KIG), lo­cally known as Ko­mal, fol­low­ing the meet­ing with the KIU on Novem­ber 20. He met with the KIG com­mit­tee, led by Ali Bapir.

At the press con­fer­ence, Bapir said that the meet­ing was very pos­i­tive, adding that what makes the peo­ple happy will make the

By Salih Wal­ad­bagi par­ties hap­pier, too.

He stressed that the new cab­i­net has to learn lessons from the mis­takes of the pre­vi­ous cab­i­nets. He stated that the KRG cab­i­net has to be broad-based with part­ners who play an ac­tive and gen­uine role.

He de­clared that his party would not join the gov­ern­ment uni­lat­er­ally.

Bapir also de­clared that he hopes none of the po­lit­i­cal par­ties set “crip­pling con­di­tions” ahead of the talks.

“We hope the new gov­ern­ment will be based on jus­tice, hu­man rights and serv­ing all cit­i­zens equally,” he stressed.

In a sig­nif­i­cant re­mark, Barzani said that his party would not veto any re­quest from the po­lit­i­cal par­ties, and that it would not ac­cept a veto from oth­ers.

He stressed that the KDP would take the plans of the other par­ties into ac­count in form­ing the new cab­i­net.

“I am de­lighted to see that all the po­lit­i­cal par­ties would like to take part in the KRG cab­i­net,” said Barzani.

Re­gard­ing the amend­ment to the draft con­sti­tu­tion, Barzani de­clared that his party will not veto the amend­ment.

Barzani added that he will visit all the win­ning par­ties, even par­ties that won a sin­gle seat.

Nechir­van Barzani, deputy KDP leader and head of his party's com­mit­tee ne­go­ti­at­ing on form­ing the new KRG cab­i­net, and Barham Salih, head of PUK com­mit­tee, speak dur­ing a press con­fer­ence in Su­laimani on Mon­day Novem­ber 18, 2013.

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