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PM Barzani leads high-level KRG delegation to Baghdad; meetings held with Iraq’s senior leadership

  • New Prime Minister emphasises commitment to building stable, constructive ties with the Federal Government
  • Meetings held with Iraq’s President, Prime Minister and Speaker of Parliament

Erbil, Kurdistan Region, Iraq (GOV.KRD, 16 July 2019) - A high-level delegation from the Kurdistan Regional Government (KRG), headed by Prime Minister Masrour Barzani, visited Baghdad today, where they held meetings with Iraqi President Barham Salih, Prime Minister Adil Abdul-Mahdi, and the Speaker of Parliament Mohammed al-Halbousi.

Prime Minister Barzani and the delegation were first received at the presidential palace by Iraqi President Barham Salih, who welcomed the visit as a gesture of goodwill by the KRG to resolve the prolonged disputes between Erbil and Baghdad.

President Salih stated during the meeting that he was “optimistic about the new [KRG] cabinet’s capacity to bring about reforms and a new era in the Kurdistan Region”, noting that he hoped the outstanding disagreements would be addressed within the framework of the constitution.

The KRG delegation was later received by Prime Minister Adil Abdul-Mahdi, who congratulated Prime Minister Barzani on the formation of the new KRG government. The Iraqi Prime Minister said he welcomed the initiative as an indication of the KRG’s commitment to resolving issues that can only be addressed through joint efforts. Later inthe meeting, Prime Minister Abdul-Mahdi commended the Kurdistan Region for hosting a large number of internally displaced persons (IDP) from other parts of Iraq.

Prime Minister Barzani reiterated the Kurdistan Region’s support for the Iraqi premier, noting that the Kurdistan Region should be a genuine partner in Iraq. The Prime Minister emphasised that Kurdistan seeks nothing more than the full implementation of its rights under the constitution, which will form the basis of all negotiations.

The two Prime Ministers agreed to draw up a roadmap for defining the areas of disagreement and proposing solutions. The roadmap will be followed by the formation of a technical committee which will have responsibility for establishing the framework for any solutions in accordance with the constitution.

The KRG delegation met with Iraqi Speaker of Parliament Mohammed al-Halbousi later in the day. The Speaker stated during the meeting that, in the interests of the Iraqi peoples, Iraq’s legislature is committed to resolving the disputes Erbil and Baghdad within the framework of the law and constitution.

Speaking after the meetings, Prime Minister Masrour Barzani said:

“The Kurdistan Regional Government wants to have a genuine and constructive partnership with Baghdad. This government is fully committed to settling its outstanding issues with our federal counterparts, based on a clear understanding of both parties’ rights and duties as set in the constitution.”