Shafaq News/ On Wednesday, the Kurdistan Regional Government (KRG) announced its rejection of any changes to the articles and items about financial dues for Kurdistan in the draft Iraqi general budget law for the next three years.
A statement issued by the KRG Presidency revealed that the Kurdish cabinet held a meeting where Prime Minister Masrour Barzani provided an overview of the negotiations between the Kurdish government and the federal government.
These discussions resulted in an agreement between the two parties based on shared interests and the constitutional framework, ensuring the Region's financial entitlements in the budget law.
The statement urged expediting the budget's approval and respecting the Region's constitutional rights and obligations, emphasizing the importance of adhering to the agreed-upon paragraphs and understandings.
The prime minister reiterated that the Kurdistan Region had fulfilled all its obligations and called on the federal government to reciprocate by securing the rights and entitlements of the Region, similar to other regions in Iraq.
Erbil and Baghdad have had several outstanding issues that have been the subject of ongoing discussions and negotiations. These issues primarily revolve around political, economic, and security matters.
One of the key outstanding issues is oil and gas resources and revenue sharing. KRG has its own oil and gas reserves and has signed contracts with international companies, which Baghdad considers illegal. The two sides have been working on reaching an agreement on revenue sharing and managing these resources.
Another significant issue is the allocation of the national budget. The KRG has sought a larger share of the funding from the central government, citing the Region's unique circumstances and needs. Disputes over budget allocation have led to tensions and delays in payments to the KRG.
Ensuring security coordination and cooperation between Erbil and Baghdad has been challenging. This includes issues such as the presence and control of security forces in disputed territories, coordination in counterterrorism efforts, and border security.
The status of disputed territories, particularly those in northern Iraq, remains contentious between Erbil and Baghdad. These territories, such as Kirkuk, have historically been claimed by both the KRG and the central government. Resolving the status of these territories and determining their administration and governance has been a key point of discussion.
Peshmerga Forces: The integration of the Kurdish Peshmerga forces into the Iraqi security forces has been a topic of negotiation.
The KRG has sought to maintain some level of autonomy over its Peshmerga forces while also ensuring their cooperation and coordination with the Iraqi military.
Efforts have been made to address these outstanding issues through dialogue, negotiations, and establishment of various joint committees between Erbil and Baghdad. In addition, international mediation and support, including from the United Nations and neighboring countries, have also played a role in facilitating discussions and finding common ground.