dimanche 11 mai 2014

EU MEETING: Massoud Barzani sets conditions for Kurds' participation in new Iraqi governement

10-5-2014 – Kurdpress – Kurdistan Region President Massoud Barzani set conditions for the central government to see the Kurds in the new government of the state that is due to be formed after the April 30 elections.  In a meeting with the head of the European Union Delegation to Iraq, Jana Hybaskova, and ambassadors and representatives of a number of EU countries in Iraq, Barzani shed light on Iraq political developments and the political process in the country.

“Before we join the government, we must receive guarantees that a number of key issues will be addressed by the new government and these include: power must lie in the council of ministers, and not in the hands of the prime minister; office of the commander in chief must be abolished, senior military commanders must be approved by the parliament; the army cannot be used for settling internal political disputes; implementation of Article 140 of the Constitution; resolution of the oil and gas dispute; funding for the Peshmarga forces; the holding of a long-overdue census,” said Barzani.

In response to a question from the French Ambassador about the participation of Kurds in the new government in Baghdad, Barzani said that the Kurds would need guarantees that their demands will be addressed.

Asked whether the Kurds will demand the post of Iraq president, Barzani said although the post is mainly ceremonial, but that it should be allocated to a candidate from the Kurdistan Region. The Kurdish president thanked the EU delegation for their visit to Kurdistan and for their endorsement of the election process. He said the EU can play an important role in strengthening the democratic process in the country.

“Your positive assessment of our elections gives us strength to continue in this path. Your support will help us address our shortcomings. The EU can play an important role in Iraq. Its role should be based on the promotion of democracy, upholding of the Constitution, and genuine power-sharing in the country. I believe this election is the last opportunity for the country to have real power-sharing and to enjoy stability. If genuine partnership is not implemented in the new government, our people will go for a referendum on a confederation in Iraq,” he went on to say in the meeting. On behalf of the EU, Ms. Jana Hybaskova thanked the KRG for their support to the more than 240,000 Syrian refugees currently living in Kurdistan and acknowledged that this has created great strain on the KRG resources. For his part, Barzani said that the KRG would continue to do what it can to support the Syrian refugees.

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