GEOPOLITICA DEL MONDO MODERNO

Tag archive

PUK

KDP plans to reactivate Kurdistan Region parliament without Speaker

BreakingNews @en di

Efforts to resolve the Kurdistan Region’s political crisis and reactivate parliament in advance of an anticipated referendum on independence are stagnated. The Kurdistan Democratic Party (KDP) is hopeful that parliament can sit in June in the absence of the parliament speaker, but most other parties are not on board with the KDP’s plan. “There is good understating with respect to the question of reactivating the parliament. I therefore think the parliament will be reactivated in a month”, Jaafar Ibrahim, KDP politburo member and deputy speaker of Kurdistan’s parliament, told Rudaw in a recent interview. According to information obtained by Rudaw, the KDP parliamentary bloc, in coordination with MPs from the Patriotic Union of Kurdistan (PUK) and minority representatives, wants to hold a parliamentary session from June to September, on the basis of the legislature’s by-laws, in order to hold a referendum on independence. The Change Movement (Gorran) and the PUK have both stated that a referendum can be called only by the parliament. “The parliament has two sessions per year. The first session starts at the beginning of March and ends at the end of June. The second one commences at the beginning of September and ends at the end of December”, article 5 of the parliamentary by-laws states. After the KDP prevented the speaker of Kurdistan’s parliament and Gorran party member, Dr. Yusif Mohammed, from entering Erbil on October 12, 2015, the KDP has several times hinted at annulling its political agreement with Gorran, which was ratified on April 17, 2014. This agreement entitled the Gorran party to hold the position of parliament speaker and four ministerial positions along with a body within the Kurdistan Regional Government (KRG). Article 16, section 2 of the parliament’s by-laws addresses the vacancy of the position of parliament speaker: “In the event the position of parliament speaker, his deputy or that of the parliament’s secretary, becomes vacant for any reason, the parliament will elect replacements to them in its first session after these or one of these positions had become vacant, according to the text of these by-laws”. The ensuing steps are mentioned in section 1 of article 6 in the parliament by-laws: “The speaker of parliament or one fourth of its members has the right to call for an emergency session which will focus on the subjects mentioned in the call for the meeting”. According to the parliament by-laws, a parliamentary emergency meeting requires the signatures of 28 MPs. According to the amended election law of 1992, however, holding a session to discuss a specific subject requires signatures of one third of MPs. In the case of the current parliament, it would require signatures of 37 MPs. In the presence of this law, the parliament will not depend on its by-laws. The KDP can call for this session on its own as it has 38 MPs.“The parliament has two options: either holding elections on time, or extending its legal term. In addition to the question of reactivating the parliament, there is also the question of the fourth parliamentary term nearing its end,” Shwan Ahmed, KDP MP and member of the parliament’s law committee, said. “If the parliament cannot be reactivated through reaching an agreement on the question, the oldest MP can chair the session, according to the law. And this is because the parliament’s presidential body [speaker] hasn’t been able to discharge his duties. However, the KDP wants to settle this question through dialogue. Otherwise, the best solution is holding snap elections or holding elections on time. And we as a party have made preparations for this”, Ahmed added. According to article 10 of the parliament by-laws, the first parliamentary session will be chaired by the oldest MP. This is in favor of the KDP, as the oldest MP of this term is KDP member Mohammed Sadiq. Gorran: This way of reopening parliament will further deepen the crises. A Gorran party MP has said that reactivating the parliament this way will further complicate the problems of the Kurdistan Region. “The parliament’s chairing staff is not on leave or absent. Rather, the speaker of parliament was barred from going back to his place to execute his duties. Hence, any attempt to hold an emergency session in the absence of parliament’s chairing body will further deepen the political crisis”, Bahar Mahmud, an MP with the Gorran party, told Rudaw. Bahar Mahmud is also deputy head of the parliament’s law committee. “Calling for an emergency session is a legitimate request if it is made by one third of the MPs, providing that the request is made by the chairing body. And the chairing body is not dead yet”, Mahmud said, adding that there is no need to resort to the oldest member chairing the session. After the oldest person is called upon to chair the session, according to article 22 of the parliament by-laws, the provisional speaker, after being sworn in, will call for candidates for the position of parliament speaker, his deputy, and parliament secretary. This way, the parliament will be reactivated, a source from the KDP faction told Rudaw. An obstacle for holding this session is a potential lack of MPs attending the session. According to article 4 of the amended parliament by-laws, a parliamentary session is illegal if the majority of the MPs are absent. In order for the session to be able to go ahead in the absence of the parliament’s current chairing body, 56 MPs should attend the session. The PUK does not see the KDP’s plan as a potential resolution to the problem. “I predict the situation will remain the same. It is unlikely the parties will be prepared to make concessions for the sake of reaching a national agreement. Resorting to the practice of majority or minority of MPs to reactivate the parliament will create more divisions, and will not help resolve the crises,” Salar Mahmud, an MP with the PUK, said. The Islamic Union’s position is that parliament cannot sit in the absence of its current speaker.  “The session cannot be held in the absence of current chairing body. And this is because the chairing body has not been removed in a vote. They are alive. Holding an emergency session is therefore unlikely”, Abu Bakr Haladni, head of the Islamic Union’s bloc in the Kurdistan Region’s parliament, said. The deputy speaker of Kurdistan’s parliament has told some MPs that all possible ways have reached deadlock. That is why holding elections in November this year is a strong possibility, Haladni added.

 

Gorran says it welcomes serious efforts to resolve issues in Kurdistan Region

BreakingNews @en di

Change Movement (Gorran) said it welcomes serious efforts to resolve issues in the Kurdistan Region, adding that the party hopes that current issues will be resolved at their root. Gorran released a statement regarding the Kurdistan Region’s situation on Wednesday  saying there have been attempts to silence the Kurdistan Region and its capital through the continued deactivation of the Kurdistan Parliament. “Attempts to subdue one voice and one color, frightening, politicalizing everything and monopolizing power, parliament, government, presidency, security institutions, banks, relation departments, markets and university are principles of the previous regimes and they have damaged the experience of the Kurdistan Region and the beautiful image of this city [Erbil]”, the statement read. The Kurdistan Parliament is the “only institution” to represent all the political parties and the people of the Kurdistan Region, Gorran said. “When the Kurdistan Democratic Party (KDP) felt its bad philosophy of governance was facing changes and its private interests faced danger, it closed parliament and paralyzed the government”, the statement added. “Gorran hopes all the issues in the Kurdistan Region will be resolved at the root as soon as possible. In this regard, we welcome any serious effort and project which considers balance and public interest”, it stated. Regarding Kurdish independence and a referendum on the issue, Gorran said the party won’t allow a similar experience to that of South Sudan to be repeated in the region, adding that an independent Kurdistan should also not mirror a Saudi-like power structure. “We don’t want a state like Saudi [Arabia], where a group and a family have seized the nation’s benefits. We don’t want a person to give himself the right to remain on the chair of power and to be above law”, the statement said. Gorran also referred to an agreement with the Patriotic Union of Kurdistan (PUK) saying there are people within the PUK who are blocking the agreement from being carried out. “Total block to accomplish the agreement is inside the PUK. It is the PUK Leadership [that] doesn’t step up to fulfill it. They behave opposite of the content of the agreement. However, the small gang in the PUK who’re blocking the Gorran-PUK agreement will not stop our march, we will deal with the genuine PUK”.

Deeping disagreements put PUK-Gorran deal on shaky ground

BreakingNews @en di

Recent frictions between the two parties have only deepened over the past weeks as Gorran’s acting Governor in Sulaimani Sardar Qadir resigned from office in protest against what he called lack of cooperation, and PUK’s increasing partnership with the dominant Kurdistan Democratic Party (KDP) to reopen the region’s parliament which has been closed since October 2015. The parliament was shut down after the KDP removed its Gorran Speaker Yousif Muhammad in retaliation for deadly riots that hit KDP offices in Sulaimani province nearly 2 years ago. The KDP has accused Gorran of masterminding the protests that killed several KDP members and wounded dozens more. The KDP has since opposed the return of the former speaker and asked the parties to reopen the parliament by electing a new speaker, something Gorran has insistently opposed. “If the parliament is reopened while the (current) speaker is removed, it will be against the agreement”, between the PUK and Gorran, said Mahwi Muhammad, head of Gorran office in Sulaimani referring to ongoing negotiations between the PUK and KDP to reopen the assembly.  “We expect the PUK to officially announce the end of the agreement. It is true half of the PUK have opposed the deal but we still expect the other half to implement the agreement”, he added. The polemical PUK-Gorran pact sent shockwaves in Kurdistan Region when it was announced in May last year whose implementation could have upset the political order in the country dominated by the powerful KDP and its strategic alliance with the PUK.  The deal would most notably allow PUK and Gorran to enter general elections on a joint ballot and consequently increase their chances to form the next Kurdish cabinet, which if implemented, would have diminished KDP’s dominance over government bodies since the 1990s. Gorran members have accused PUK of not “honouring” the deal not only in the parliament controversy, but also in Sulaimani province where both parties have the bulk of their power bases. According to Gorran of nearly 840 provincial posts in Sulaimani and Halabja, the party holds only 33 offices.

PUK agrees to replace Iraqi Kurdistan parliament speaker.

BreakingNews @en di

The Patriotic Union of Kurdistan (PUK) has agreed on a change of the speaker of the now-paralyzed Iraqi Kurdistan Parliament, and is believed to be ready to suggest the idea to Change Movement (Gorran) in the next meeting between the two groups, a source said. The source further said that the KDP had agreed to reactivate parliament and that the speaker position would be given back to Gorran,which has the second most seats in parliament, but that the current speaker, Yusuf Mohammed Sadiq, should be replaced. “Following several meetings and talks, we could convince [Massoud] Barzani to accept the suggestion”, the source noted. The PUK will suggest the idea to the Change Movement in the next meeting between the two parties, the source said, but it is unclear whether Gorran would accept such a change.

 

Kurdish MPs show support for release of HDP lawmakers to European Parliament

BreakingNews @en di

Kurdistan Region lawmakers made clear to the European Parliament of their conviction that Turkey must release the jailed co-leaders and lawmakers of the Peoples’ Democratic Party (HDP). Barzan Hassan said a Kurdish delegation from the Kurdistan Parliament presented the signatures of 40 lawmakers to officials from the European Parliament on Thursday as a show of support for jailed HDP politicians and co-leaders in Turkey. “We support the release of [Selahattin] Demirtas and his friends because they are Kurds”, lawmaker from the Patriotic Union of Kurdistan (PUK), Salar Mahmoud, said. Mahmoud added they will meet with the deputy head of the European Parliament for talks on the same issue. The Kurdish politicians said they hoped that the European Parliament will consider the case of the HDP lawmakers’ detention by Turkey. Since the collapse of a ceasefire between the Kurdistan Workers’ Party (PKK) and Turkey in 2015, the Turkish government has stepped up its campaign against Kurdish officials, including those from the HDP, accusing them of links to the PKK – an allegation the HDP denies.

Kurdistan referendum needs parliamentary mandate.

BreakingNews @en di

Two of the main Kurdish parties have released a joint statement emphasizing that holding referendum for independence is a “national” matter and therefore needs to be discussed and “finalized” in the Kurdish parliament, an institution that has been paralyzed since October 2015. The ruling KDP, which holds the posts of Iraqi Kurdistan Region’s presidency and prime ministry has so far insisted that the long-anticipated referendum does not need a mandate from the Kurdish legislature. With regard to the so-called disputed areas, otherwise defined by the Kurdish authorities as the Kurdistani areas outside the Kurdistan Region, the two sides say that they are for holding a referendum in these places, which importantly include the oil-rich province of Kirkuk, claimed both by Baghdad and Erbil. “The two sides agree on holding referendum in the Kurdistani areas outside the administration of the Kurdistan Region”. The statement added that they discussed a number of pressing issues, including power sharing between the two parties in the provinces of Sulaimani and Halabja in accordance with the agreement they signed last year, paving the way for shared governance in these two provinces. The PUK announced last Wednesday that holding an independence referendum in Kurdistan cannot be realized without reactivating the Kurdish parliament and seeking solutions for the outstanding political problems.

 

Kurdistan lawmakers call for the release of HDP and DBP officials

BreakingNews @en di

Lawmakers in the Kurdistan Parliament called on the international community to work towards the release of officials from the Peoples’ Democratic Party (HDP) and Democratic Regions Party (DBP). A number of lawmakers gathered in front of the Kurdistan Parliament’s office in Sulaimani on Wednesday (April 19) calling on the international community to intervene and help release the Kurdish parties’ officials in Turkey. Lawmaker from the Patriotic Union of Kurdistan (PUK), Salar Mahmoud, said during a press conference that all the Kurdistan Parliament lawmakers support the release of the HDP and DBP officials. “We call on the international community so that the HDP and DBP [officials] are released”, Mahmoud said, adding that the release of the officials would help bring peace to Turkey.

Abadi: Now is not the time for Kurdistan independence referendum.

BreakingNews @en di

Speaking to reporters in Baghdad, Abadi said the time is not ripe for a referendum, with ISIS on the doorstep, running parts of the country. Referring to comments by some Kurdish leaders who claimed holding a referendum does not mean the declaration of independence, Abadi said “Some say we will hold referendum, but we’re not going to implement it. Then what will you have to tell your people if you are to hold referendum and not implement it”. He reiterated Baghdad’s message to Erbil that “we frankly say, it will not be in the interest of the Kurdistan Region to hold a referendum at this time. I, as the prime minister, have to take the interests of my citizens into consideration. In my opinion holding referendum is not in their interest, but will create a set of problems for them. Being in a hurry in this subject is equal to a withdrawal from all the victories that have been achieved in the past”. He gave the short-lived Republic of Mahabad in Iranian Kurdistan which lasted less than a year as an example of a failure in the Kurdish movement in the region. The time was not right for the Republic of Mahabad, leading to its collapse. Abadi’s message to the Kurdistan Region was to not repeat the same experience. Commenting on the controversial flag issue in Kirkuk, Abadi said “Too much attention has been paid to the raising of the Kurdistan flag in Kirkuk. A solution to this subject has to be found. Our words with regards to this matter are clear. According to law, they do not have the right to hoist flags on the governmental buildings. Also, according to law, the Kirkuk governmental institutions are part of Iraq and the Iraqi government raises only the Iraqi flag”. Explaining a suggestion he sent to the Kurdistan Region authorities through a joint Kurdistan Democratic Party (KDP) and Patriotic Union of Kurdistan (PUK) delegation who visited Baghdad earlier this month, Abadi said “I suggested to them to take down the flags on the governmental buildings and put them on the political parties’ buildings instead. Then it becomes another subject, which I, as the prime minister, will not get involved in.”On the same question, he pointed out, “I talked to many politicians on the issue of the Kurdistan flag who were against it. But now they have done the job and cannot stand against it, believing that it is political rhetoric”.

 

TITLE: PUK-KDP delegation met with Head of the Shia National Iraqi Alliance: a referendum doesn't directly mean Independence

BreakingNews @en di

The joint delegation met with Head of the Shia National Iraqi Alliance, Ammar al-Hakim, in Baghdad during a visit to the capital to meet Iraqi officials. Following the meeting, a delegation member, Adnan Mufti, told reporters that the delegation had discussed several issues between Baghdad and the Kurdistan Region with the Shia National Iraqi Alliance, and commented on talk around a possible upcoming referendum regarding the independence of Kurdistan. “A referendum doesn’t directly mean independence. It is the Kurdish will to express an opinion about it”, Mufti said. “We want to discuss with Iraq to resolve the issues and the ways are open. We think our meetings were positive and we will continue”, he added. A leader of the Shia National Iraqi Alliance, Ali Alaq, said they aren’t against the Kurdistan Region and they listened to views around activating Article 140 of the Iraq Constitution in order to maintain security in Kirkuk and other areas. The delegation visited Baghdad to meet with Iraqi President Fuad Masum, Iraqi Prime Minister Haider al-Abadi and Parliament Speaker Salim alJabouri and other leaders to resolve issues between both sides as well as issues that have cropped up due to recent developments in Kirkuk.

The Kurdish wars

Middle East - Africa/Politics di

Against Isis, against Erdogan’s threats, against Barzani that wants to be the president of KRG forever.

[subscriptionform]
[level-european-affairs]
While on the turkish border, President Erdogan is exploiting international aid to face Isis and, at the same time, try to hit the Kurds of PKK, the president of the KRG (Kurdistan Regional Government), Barzani, is organizing military parades in order to retain his mandate, beyond the two-year extension already granted. KRG is the only form of government able to represent Kurdish people, divided between Iraq, Turkey, Syria and Iran.

The Kurdistan Regional Government was established in Iraq after the collapse of the regime of Saddam Hussein and is now subjected to the same power struggles that caused the instability of the Middle East. During the years Kurdish people were, and still are, discriminated against. Saddam Hussein has made the Kurds the target of his chemical weapons causing real massacres as in Halabja in 1988. The persecution took the traits of the genocide through the “Anfal Campaign”.

In Turkey , as well as in Syria, over the years, the persecution never stopped and Kurdish people did not get more favors. Their conditions has come to international attention since the irregular army of KRG, the Peshmarga, took their weapons to face the advancing of Isis. The pages of history books written now, will describe the heroic resistance of these mixed troops made of men and women, who fought to protect cities like Kobanî. But this is not enough for Turkey that is ready to exploit the Isis justification to attack the Kurdish army.

If the elections on June 7 in Turkey seemed to be a turning point with the entrance in Parliament of HDP; recent events like the connection of the Democratic party of the Kurdish people to PKK after exceeding the threshold of 10% of the preferences set by Erdogan, seem to record a sharp setback.In recent years, the bombings inflicted by the Turkish on the Kurds of northern Iraq never stopped and have caused the reaction of the Kurdish militants. On August 10th, the escalation of violence caused 9 victims, killed in four separate attacks. Near the US Consulate and a police station in Istanbul and near a convoy and a military helicopter in the south-east of the country, Sirkin, in Kurdish territory.

Episodes that are triggering the danger of a real civil war. The DHKP-C claimed the shots against the US consulate that brings the terrorists of the Revolutionary Front for the Liberation of the People, and PKK, the Kurdistan Workers Party of Ocalan, was responsible for the two attacks in the south-east . The reasons that led Erdogan to attack the Kurds, causing their reaction, is to be found in the victory of the Kurdish minority in the last election.

The entry of HDP into Parliament has removed the AKP, the Party for Justice and Development which belongs to Erdogan, that had held absolute majority for 13 years. After the attacks of August 10, Erdogan is supporting the need to go to early elections and get back to the majority denied last June. The attacks claimed by DHKP-C and PKK will cause a loss of votes in the Kurdish party of Hdp at they will be used at his advantage. If it is not possible now to talk about a probable alliance between the guerrillas of the Kurdistan Workers Party (PKK), and the terrorists of the Revolutionary People’s Liberation Front (DHKP-C), however, it is certain that the Kurds are increasingly unwilling to accept the requests of the leader of the PKK, Abdullah Ocalan, in 2006.

From the prison of Imral he asked his fighters to seek dialogue with the Turkish government to reach a cease-fire. If the risk, in Turkey, is to come to a war against the Kurds, the chances that serious internal unrest will happen in the autonomous region of Iraqi Kurdistan are just as real . Days ago, the President of the KRG, Massoud Barzani organized a military parade in Erbil. A clear message designed to get to what he has been asking for a long time, that Is a new confirmation of his role. According to the internal laws to KRG, the presidential term of four years is extendable just for only one renewal. Then, the President decades automatically. Barzani has already achieved a two-year extension that will run out on the next August 19. However, he does not intend to give up his role. The first elections in the KRG took place in 1992. Neither political parties PUK and PKK, represented by Jalal Talabani and Masoud Barzani reached a majority and an agreement. Those conditions caused the dreadful civil war that has killed more than 3,000 civilians. When the civil war ended in 2005, Talabani became the Iraqi President and Barzani the KRG’s President.

The power of the Kurdistan Regional Presidency was stronger than the one of the Parliament and the Kurdistan Regional Government (KRG), to counterbalance the Iraqi presidency. For the KRG, the presidency was a new institution with unlimited powers. The result is that corruption has grown exponentially, national resources have been squandered, private militias and intelligence services are increasingly loyal to their parties as opposed to the country, and there is ever-growing social inequality. The country is bankrupt and most people are struggling to make ends meet, while 10,000 millionaires and 15 billionaires have emerged in a short period of time. Society is polarized between lackeys who live on political parties’ handouts and good honest citizens who have to wait for wages that are three months behind. In fact the system is almost near a dictatorial regime than a Presidential one. It’s true that is a well-established Middle-Eastern-Fact that the presidential system only breeds dictators and corrupt leaders.

In 2013, when Barzani’s term was extended, the political system became an absolute presidency according to legistlation and the chances required by Barzani, to get the president’s powers greater than those of any other president in the region. Just to have an idea, here’s a few of the KR President’s powers: highest executive power in KR, chief of General Staff, power to dissolve Parliament, can announce a State of Emergency [without parliament’s consent], power to appoint KR’s Constitutional Court members and members of the Judges Assembly, power to control KR’s Security Council and KR’s Intelligence services and most importantly of all, the power to approve or reject legislation passed by parliament.

The oppositions tried to make alliance to oppose Barzani but every attempt has been unconclusive. When the war against IS began, only the attack to Shingal and the following capture of a 1,000 women and children made Barzani act. Before that violences Barzani was refusing to engage in the conflict. Nowadays even the war hasn’t motivated Barzani to get his act together with Yazidis and unite the Peshmerga into a strong national army. There can only be two explanations for the multidimensional crisis Barzani has dragged the nation into: either he is too weak to accept responsibility and tackle these matters head on or else he is directly involved in the wrongdoing and exploitation of national resources.

What could happen is Barzani left? The response is not easy at the moment. Now, KRG is governed from the two-party coalition of the Kurdistan Democratic Party and Patriotic Union of Kurdistan (Kurdistan List). At the opposition we found four parties, PUK, Gorran, KIU and KIG that might accept another KDP candidate o tolerate another term for Barzani only if KDP accepts constitutional amendments to establish a full parliamentary system and limit the powers of the president.
But at the moment KDP has not an influential leader who can be accepted by both of the main wings of their party. The PUK seems to have given up on the position since they already have Iraq’s presidency. Gorran also hasn’t declared any interest in the presidency. Just one thing is certain. If the parties do not reach a consensus in the next few months, KR will face a political crisis which could potentially lead to civil unrest.
Monia Savioli

[/level-european-affairs]

Monia Savioli
Vai a Inizio
WhatsApp chat