Zebari warns to resign
The Iraqi Finance Minister Hushiar Zebari, a Kurd from Kurdistan Democratic Party, has warned the Iraqi federal government if it is not ready to send the Kurdistan Regional’s share of the national budget, then he is going to offer his resignation letter.
Ahmed Hajji Rasheed, a Kurdish MP from Kurdistan Islamic League, confirmed the reports regarding Zebari’s threats.
Rasheed stated that Baghdad should commit to the agreement signed between Kurdistan and Iraq. He also added that resignation of Iraqi Finance Minister is a political decision and the Kurdish political leadership should accept it.
The Kurdish MP announced that the long-term disputes between the two parties have to be resolved basically and salary of the employees should not be involved in the conflict and made it politicized.
A Kurdistan Regional Government delegation led by PM Barzani headed to Baghdad on February 15 to discuss oil exports and the Kurdistan Region’s budget. The delegation returned back to Kurdistan with no gain and the meetings ended in impasse.
The main objective of the meetings was to discuss the implementation of the agreement reached last December between the Kurdistan Regional Government and the Federal Government of Iraq on oil export and budgetary issues.
During the meeting, it became apparent that due to the financial crisis in Iraq and the lack of liquidity, the Iraqi government is unable to pay the Kurdistan Region’s share of January and February from the federal budget.
The two sides agreed to continue holding further talks in order to find an appropriate solution to the situation.
According to the agreement between Baghdad and Erbil reached on Dec. 2, the Kurdish regional government has to export 250,000 barrels of oil per day, and Kirkuk Province 300,000 under the federal government’s supervision. In return, the Iraqi government would provide 17 percent of its national budget to Erbil.