The Refugees Changed Kur­dis­tan Re­gion’s De­mog­ra­phy!

The Kurdish Globe - - NEWS - EX­EC­U­TIVE EDI­TOR

Kur­dis­tan Re­gion, like sev­eral re­gional states, opened its doors for refugees and dis­placed peo­ple. This hos­pi­tal­ity re­flects the true pos­i­tive pic­ture of Kurd­si­tan with some un­de­sired con­se­quences:

Firstly: the in­ter­na­tional com­mu­nity has made clear that Kur­dis­tan Re­gion is a safe area, and has a high level of tol­er­ance, hu­man­i­tar­ian spirit and op­por­tu­nity of co­ex­is­tence. It has re­ceived the refugees and dis­placed be­yond its ca­pac­ity. This is con­sid­ered as a po­lit­i­cally pro­duc­tive and diplo­mat­i­cally suc­cess­ful pol­icy.

Se­condly: Kur­dis­tan Re­gion is threat­ened by se­cu­rity con­cerns and fears, de­mo­graphic changes, wors­en­ing econ­omy, dis­abil­ity to pro­vide ser­vices and job op­por­tu­nity for the peo­ple.

It was good that the Prime Min­is­ter, Nechir­van Barzani, said hon­estly in a con­fer­ence on Fe­bru­ary 12th in Hewler that the Kur­dis­tan Re­gion is un­der threat of de­mo­graphic change. Within a year, the pop­u­la­tion has in­creased by 28% due to the war refugees from both Syria and Iraq.

The Prime Min­is­ter’s rev­e­la­tion is im­por­tant. It’s true, Kur­dis­tan Re­gion is un­der the threat of a de­mo­graphic change and se­cu­rity and sta­bil­ity con­cerns as well, be­cause of the refugees’ sec­tar­ian and po­lit­i­cal align­ment that some of their rel­a­tives could be in­volved with the rad­i­cal ter­ror­ist groups, or they them­selves could be un­der the in­flu­ence of the de­vel­op­ments due to some re­li­gious and sec­tar­ian fac­tors.

It’s been a year salaries of peo­ple of Kur­dis­tan are cut by Bagh­dad gov­ern­ment; the peo­ple are con­fronting ISIS just like the Pesh­merge, be­cause all peo­ple here are against the ISIS, while the Bagh­dad gov­ern­ment is against IS as an eth­nic group. So even now this uni­fied at­ti­tude of the Kur­dish peo­ple against ter­ror­ism has not been ap­pre­ci­ated. The Cen­tral Gov­ern­ment wants to form Hashd Al-Shaabi (the lo­cal mili­tias formed to com­bat ISIS).

The KRG Prime Min­is­ter hit on the nail! What power, econ­omy, hu­man­i­tar­ian ca­pa­bil­ity can solve the prob­lems of over a mil­lion and a half refugees and can pro­vide them non-stop ser­vices? While Bagh­dad is the one re­spon­si­ble for pro­tect­ing all those refugees. But in­stead, it car­ries on its po­lit­i­cal, eco­nomic and psy­cho­log­i­cal pres­sures on the Kur­dis­tan Re­gion author­ity.

What about the dis­puted ter­ri­to­ries out­side the Kur­dis­tan Re­gion in which Pesh­merge are wag­ing a cru­cial and fierce war against ISIS? Isn’t this a real hu­man­i­tar­ian cri­sis that Bagh­dad and the in­ter­na­tional com­mu­nity are re­spon­si­ble for? Isn’t it a po­lit­i­cal cri­sis? In­stead of sup­port­ing the Pesh­merge to main­tain the sta­bil­ity of th­ese ar­eas, the Bagh­dad Gov­ern­ment con­sid­ers de­ploy­ing Shia mili­tias to re-oc­cupy the ar­eas and carry on Ara­biza­tion pol­icy to change the de­mog­ra­phy of the lo­cal pop­u­la­tion.

Kur­dis­tan Re­gion is prac­ti­cally un­der a po­lit­i­cal and eco­nom­i­cal pres­sure, as well as forced de­mo­graphic changes. Has the in­ter­na­tional com­mu­nity taken into ac­count what would hap­pen if this sta­ble area face fur­ther cri­sis? Have they thought that the fi­nan­cial ca­pa­bil­ity the Kur­dis­tan Re­gion will not last for long on the same level? It’s true that peo­ple of Kur­dis­tan are all against ISIS, and has opened their doors to the refugees and dis­placed peo­ple, but the sit­u­a­tion is en­ergy-con­sum­ing. It’s not pos­si­ble that sons of Kur­dis­tan are mar­tyred while some of the guests whis­tle for ISIS’s con­tin­u­a­tion, en­joy­ing par­ties at night and sleep well in the day­time. Yes, it’s not pos­si­ble that Pesh­merge and their fam­i­lies are not get­ting their salaries while the refugees are pro­vided with jobs in the safe places and be­have ir­re­spon­si­bly be­sides.

There’s no doubt that the war is de­struc­tive. It seems to last for years in Syria and Iraq. Re­cap­tur­ing Mo­sul and the Sunni ar­eas needs much time, which the Iraqi army and Shiia mili­tias can­not do alone, con­trary to what the Bagh­dad of­fi­cials main­tain. It needs the US and coali­tion ground forces, or the Ara­bic coun­tries’ forces could achieve the task in case the Shiia-ma­jor­ity author­ity in Bagh­dad and Iran agree and give the green light.

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