Nineveh requests to become autonomous region
Al-Nujaifi: declaring autonomous region benefits the Kurdistan Region too
Nineveh Governor, Ethel al-Nujaifi, announced that Nineveh Provincial Council has submitted a request letter to the Iraqi central government asking for making the Province an autonomous region.
Al-Nujaifi pointed out: “Nineveh administrative body has lost its trust in the central government because the Province’s requests and demands have been neglected and ig- nored in many respects.”
Al-Nujaifi found it essential to request the central government to approve the law of the Province Council, especially the one that is related to the security case of the Province, although the Governor does not expect the central government to answer affirmatively.
“The government has no intention to solve the issues the Province is suf- fering from. Many key issues regarding security, energy and the public services have remained unresolved,” he criticized.
In the north, Iraq’s Kurds run their own autonomous Kurdistan Region. Last year, the local authorities in Iraq’s southern Basra Province threatened to break away from the central government and create an autonomous region of their own too.
The Nineveh Governor believes declaring an autonomous region will also benefit the Kurdistan Region as well in the fields of security and economy.
Nineveh is a province in northern Iraq, which contains the ancient Assyrian city of Nineveh. It has an area of 37,323 square kilometers and an estimated population of 2,453,000 people back in 2003. Its chief city and provincial capital is Mosul, which lies across the Tigris River from the ruins of ancient Nineveh. Tal Afar is also a major city within the region. Before 1976, it was called Mosul Province and included the present-day Duhok Province too.
As far as religion is concerned, the majority of the Kurds and Arabs are Sunni Muslims, while Turkmen are mostly Shi'ites; Assyrians and Armenians are exclusively Christians; the Yazidis and Shabaks are following their own religious beliefs. Nineveh is a Sunni-majority province.
The main languages spoken here are the Arabic, the Neo-Aramaic, the Kurdish, the South Azeri, the Shabaki and the Armenian.