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Barham Salih says will protect Iraq Constitution, resolve Erbil-Baghdad disputes

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Barham Salih says will protect Iraq Constitution, resolve Erbil-Baghdad disputes

Post  GirlBye on Sat Oct 27, 2018 8:38 pm


Newly-elected Iraqi President Barham Salih delivers a press conference in Sulaimani, Kurdistan Region, on Oct. 27, 2018. (Photo: Kurdistan 24)



ERBIL (Kurdistan 24) – Iraq’s new President Barham Salih says the formation of a new government in Baghdad can resolve outstanding issues between the Federal Government of Iraq and the Kurdistan Regional Government (KRG).

During a press conference on Sunday, Salih expressed optimism at the progress of Iraq’s new government formation and stressed that his task as president is to protect the Iraqi Constitution.


“There is great hope that the new government cabinet will solve many problems, including the outstanding issues between Baghdad and Erbil, based on the Iraqi Constitution,” Salih told reporters in the Kurdistan Region’s Sulaimani province.


Ongoing disputes between Baghdad and Erbil include a share of the national budget, oil and gas revenues, salary payment for Peshmerga forces, and the status of disputed areas among other issues.


“The differences are major and not easy to solve,” Salih noted, “so, they require a political will and a real desire to resolve the outstanding tensions and end the differences.”


Salih also underlined the need to solve these issues via the constitution. “As President of the Republic of Iraq, my task is to protect the Iraqi Constitution.”
“The current situation in Kirkuk is [in violation of the constitution], so the situation should be resolved and the status of the province should be determined,” he added.


The province of Kirkuk contains a mixture of ethnicities such as Kurds, Arabs, and Turkmens. It is one of the most contested regions between the Iraqi government and the KRG.


Senior Kurdistan Region officials have repeatedly called for the need to apply Article 140 of the constitution to settle the dispute.
According to the article in the 2005 constitution, the future of Kirkuk and other disputed areas were to be decided on in three stages, beginning with normalization and then relying on a local referendum to determine which government would administer the region. However, this was never implemented due to political differences.


“The solution should be resolved in Kirkuk according to the will of its residents who have experienced great difficulties due to political differences,” Salih said.
On Oct. 2, the Iraqi Council of Representatives elected Salih as the country’s new president. He replaced Fuad Masum as Iraq’s eighth president.



http://www.kurdistan24.net/en/news/e8cce0e6-2c66-4492-8d46-8271b2d4826f
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