Erbil-Baghdad Disputes Stem From Constitution Being Sidelined: PM Barzani
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Erbil-Baghdad Disputes Stem From Constitution Being Sidelined: PM Barzani

ERBIL — Kurdistan Region Prime Minister Masrour Barzani on Tuesday stressed that lingering problems between Erbil and Baghdad are fundamentally due to the country's constitution being neglected.

Erbil-Baghdad Relations:

"The crude disputes between Erbil and Baghdad are due to the constitution not having been implemented as it is. Kurdistan's constitutional rights have unfortunately been neglected, including the right to drill, produce, and sell oil."

Federalism in Iraq:

"The obvious question is whether Iraq is a federal country or a central one. This is the key question. In a federal country, we believe powers should be distributed to all regions as enshrined in the constitution.

Unfortunately, there is a monopoly-oriented mentality in Baghdad, and I don't mean everyone of them. These people want everything to be controlled in the center. This is the difference."

Resumption of KRG Crude Exports:

"The Kurdistan Region remains committed to the constitution. And we have worked with the federal government to bridge differences on crude production and sale, but unfortunately haven't received necessary support from federal institutions.

The Ministry of Natural Resources of the Kurdistan Regional Government is ready to resume crude exports today. But the ball is in Baghdad's court. Will they fund the production of oil by companies in Kurdistan? We as the Kurdistan Regional Government will continue to protect our constitutional rights. We will also certainly be protecting the rights of the investment companies that have placed their confidence in us."

Economic Diversification:

"Kurdistan has a fertile land. There are many areas through which we can diversify our economy, and enhance sources of revenue. From the beginning of this cabinet, I have been trying to do this.

I have been working very seriously on developing the sectors of agriculture and tourism. We are also seeking to advance the sectors of education and health."


Water Scarcity:

"We have plans to build big dams in order to store water and better use it during different seasons. Proper management of water resources is one of our objectives, which we are working on."



"My style for confronting corruption is to root it out. There should be a system which corrupt people cannot abuse. It is our aim to build a well-functioning transparent system and also to digitalize government services in an attempt to enhance transparency and eliminate corruption.

Moreover, there should be accountability. People should be held accountable for their actions."

Palestine-Israel Conflict:

"We as a nation that has suffered enough from the scourge of war, know how destructive wars are. We are against war. We shouldn't resort to war to settle disputes.

We condemn war as well as attacks on civilians. We believe efforts should be made to reach a peaceful solution to any rivalry going on in the Middle East. We need to find solutions to problems before they escalate into military confrontation. We are all concerned about the war expanding in the region. We hope to see the war end, and for a peaceful solution to be reached for this conflict."

Iraq's Position on Palestine-Israel Conflict:

"I think the best thing for Iraq to do is to distance itself from this conflict. Iraq has its own problems. However, delivering humanitarian aid to war victims is a good thing. We in the Kurdistan Regional Government (KRG) have tried to dispatch humanitarian assistance to those affected by this war, but haven't been able to deliver the aid because the gates were closed."

On Removal of Iraq Parliament Speaker:

"I think the timing of this issue was not right. I am not referring to the ruling itself. The timing was not good for Iraq. We have a range of issues in the country, and the whole Middle East is facing these sorts of issues.

There are different communities in Iraq. The Sunnis are one of those communities who should be respected. Likewise, their representatives should also be respected. Changes should be made through proper and acceptable channels of the government and this community."

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