Shafaq News / Mohammed Haj Mahmoud, the leader of the Kurdish Socialist Party, highlighted today the necessity for genuine will from Baghdad to resolve the ongoing disputes and issues between Erbil and Baghdad. He emphasized that Baghdad needs to treat the citizens of the Kurdistan Region as Iraqis, both economically and politically, and recognize the region as an integral part of the country.
During a press conference, Mahmoud pointed out that Baghdad does not consider the citizens of the region as Iraqis, which reflects in their exclusion from the Iraqi government's programs. He stated that Kurdish products are not allowed to be sold in the central and southern regions of Iraq. He also noted that Baghdad used to send salaries to employees in Nineveh and Saladin provinces during its occupation by ISIS but did not send salaries to the Peshmerga forces.
Mahmoud stressed that resolving the lingering problems between the two parties requires a genuine will from Baghdad and a sense of responsibility toward the citizens of the region. He urged Baghdad to treat them as Iraqis in all aspects.
Regarding the demands to transfer salaries to Baghdad, known among Kurdish circles as Kaka Hama, Mahmoud stated that transferring the issue to Baghdad is not a solution because there are around 5 million citizens of the region registered in Baghdad, whereas the actual population of Kurdistan exceeds 6 million.
He highlighted the significant difference in the number of employees, with Kurdistan having more than 1.2 million employees receiving salaries. Additionally, he pointed out that the constitution does not allow Baghdad to directly manage the salaries of employees in Kurdistan.
Regarding the calls for postponing the Kurdistan Parliament elections, Mahmoud stated that the matter is in the hands of Kurdish parties, especially the Patriotic Union of Kurdistan and the Kurdistan Democratic Party.