PM Barzani: We hope that past mis­takes that brought Iraq to this point won’t re­peat

The Kurdish Globe - - NEWS -

Prime Min­is­ter Nechir­van Barzani yes­ter­day spoke to mem­bers of the press re­gard­ing se­cu­rity is­sues, re­sponse to the hu­man­i­tar­ian cri­sis, the gov­ern­ment for­ma­tion process in Bagh­dad, and other mat­ters fol­low­ing a meet­ing with the Speaker of the Par­lia­ment Yousif Mo­hammed.

The Prime Min­is­ter met with the Speaker of the Par­lia­ment to share a re­port about the dis­placed fam­i­lies from Sin­jar and Christian vil­lages, to dis­cuss on­go­ing ne­go­ti­a­tions with Bagh­dad, and to re­view the cur­rent mil­i­tary sit­u­a­tion. He said that he will con­tinue to dis­cuss mat­ters re­lated to Pesh­merga forces and martyrs af­fairs with the Speaker.

Prime Min­is­ter Barzani told mem­bers of the press that the KRG had a bit­ter ex­pe­ri­ence deal­ing with for­mer Prime Min­is­ter Nouri al-Ma­liki’s gov­ern­ment, and said that he hoped past mis­takes that led to the cur­rent cri­sis would not be re­peated in the next cab­i­net. He in­di­cated that a ne­go­ti­at­ing team from the Kur­dis­tan Al­liance has been es­tab­lished and that they have en­gaged in de­tailed prepara­tory meet­ings prior to vis­it­ing Bagh­dad.

The Prime Min­is­ter em­pha­sized that the del­e­ga­tion will push for a quick for­ma­tion of the gov­ern­ment, but the Kur­dis­tan Re­gion has its re­quests. He noted that th­ese points are clear, in­clud­ing im­ple­men­ta­tion of con­sti­tu­tional Ar­ti­cle 140, al­lo­ca­tion of a bud­get for Pesh­merga forces, fed­eral bud­get dis­tri­bu­tion in gen­eral, and mat­ters re­gard­ing nat­u­ral re­sources. It was de­cided that the ne­go­ti­at­ing team would dis­cuss th­ese is­sues with Bagh­dad, with the un­der­stand­ing that they can­not be im­ple­mented in two weeks. All po­lit­i­cal par­ties of the team agreed on a dead­line for the re­quests.

Prime Min­is­ter Barzani lauded the mil­i­tary and hu­man­i­tar­ian as­sis­tance pro­vided by the in­ter­na­tional com­mu­nity. “We are grate­ful to the coun­tries sup­port­ing the Kur­dis­tan Re­gion in its fight against the ter­ror­ists,” he said, adding, “The is­sue of ter­ror does not only con­cern the Kur­dis­tan Re­gional Gov­ern­ment. Rather, com­bat­ing ter­ror re­quires an in­ter­na­tional coali­tion, and we be­lieve the in­ter­na­tional com­mu­nity has thus far taken nec­es­sary steps.”

The Prime Min­is­ter ex­plained that ac­tions taken have been sup­ported by the United States and Euro­pean coun­tries mil­i­tar­ily. This support be­gan only re­cently, but nonethe­less the KRG is grate­ful to all coun­tries that have taken mea­sures to support the Kur­dis­tan Re­gion. He noted that Kur­dis­tan is at the fore­front of the world’s fight against ter­ror­ism, and again un- der­scored the need for re­gional and in­ter­na­tional co­or­di­na­tion.

An­swer­ing ques­tions about the dis­placed fam­i­lies and pro­vi­sion of hu­man­i­tar­ian aid, Prime Min­is­ter Barzani said that the KRG is un­der tremen­dous pres­sure and sadly the KRG’s bud­get re­mains with­held by Bagh­dad. This has added to the bur­den on the Kur­dis­tan Re­gion in pro­vid­ing aid to the dis­placed.

Re­gard­ing Ar­ti­cle 140, the Prime Min­is­ter pointed to the im­por­tance of ad­her­ing to the Con­sti­tu­tion and its ar­ti­cles, stat­ing that Ar­ti­cle 140 paves the way for a so­lu­tion. He added that the KRG wishes to re­solve dis­putes legally, as per the Con­stitu- tion, even if all such ar­eas are un­der KRG con­trol. At the same time, he said, “there are no guar­an­tees” or as­sur­ances to set­tle all the is­sues based on past ex­pe­ri­ences with the Ma­liki ad­min­is­tra­tion, not­ing that Bagh­dad still has not re­leased salaries for civil ser­vants work­ing in the Kur­dis­tan Re­gion.

Kur­dis­tan Re­goin Prime Min­is­ter Nechir­van Barzani talks to the press re­gard­ing the cur­rent se­cu­rity is­sues in the Re­gion, Er­bil, Tues­day, Au­gust 26, 2014.

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