The Iraqi government has said it took a number of decisions paving the way for dialogue with the Kurdistan Region Government (KRG) on disputed issues as there are signs of autonomous region’s obedience to the law of the constitution.
On his Facebook page, Ihsan al-Shamri, an adviser to Iraqi Prime Minister Haider al-Abadi, said that “Since the KRG has accepted the constitution as an arbitrator, and is showing willingness to end the crisis amid disturbance in the region caused by the salaries’ issue, we have received messages regarding those developments, which led to adoption of some decisions”.
The Baghdad-based Iraqi News quoted Shamri as saying that those decisions include “(Baghdad’s) taking over of border crossings with Iran and Turkey and forming a special committee to regulate border crossings, customs and airports”.
According to Shamri, “The committee has laid down working papers based on the constitution and the federal government’s authorities, and is currently waiting for the Region’s (governmental-technical) delegation.”
He said the decisions include a separate committee to revise Kurdistan’s educational and medical employees’ payroll, and disburse payments for water resources’ employees.
Meantime, Kurdistan government has rejected handing over the autonomous region’s border management to the Iraqi federal cabinet, saying that the law instead stresses joint administration.
“Instructions and laws emphasize on joint administration and oversight on border crossings, and the region is prepared to discuss matters related to airports and border crossings,” Safeen Dizayee, a spokesperson of the Kurdish government, told Iraqi website Alghad Press.
“There is no phrase in the law or the instructions that provide for handing over crossings and airports, but instead for a joint administration,” Dizayee said, adding that “Kurdistan Region was, from the beginning, for resolving the problem through dialogue, and certainly technical issues require dialogue more than anything else”.
Dizayee added that no talks have been held between Baghdad and Erbil to that end. “We can see a desire (to hold talks) from our brothers in Baghdad according to statements by Prime Minister Haider al-Abadi.”
A crisis erupted between Baghdad and Erbil following Kurdistan Region’s vote in September to secede from Iraq, a measure which Baghdad deemed unconstitutional, consequently taking penal economic measures that included an air embargo and a withholding of employee payments.