ERBIL, Kurdistan Region, (Kurdistan 24) – The United Nations Secretary-General in a letter to the Kurdistan Regional Government’s (KRG) Prime Minister reiterated the need to resolve issues between Baghdad and Erbil through dialogue.
UN Secretary-General Antonio Guterres, in a letter to the Kurdish Premier Nechirvan Barzani and posted on the KRG website on Friday, called for ongoing disputes between the Kurdistan Region and Iraq to be addressed through a political dialogue.
In the letter, Gueterres reiterated the need for peaceful, constructive talks on the basis of the Iraqi constitution.
“I encourage both sides to take the necessary steps to prepare the ground for a serious dialogue,” Guterres said.
Guterres expressed his optimism at the Iraqi Federal Government and the KRG openly expressing readiness for dialogue.
“For the purpose of national reconciliation, enhancing the stability and confronting the threats that are still created by [Islamic State (IS)], the current stability must be maintained,” Guterres concluded.
Ties between Erbil and Baghdad have considerably deteriorated following the Sep. 25 referendum, which saw an overwhelming majority vote for statehood.
Baghdad refused to recognize the vote and instead responded by imposing collective punitive measures against the people of Kurdistan, including the use of military force in disputed areas.
The KRG offered to freeze the results of the referendum as a show of goodwill for talks with Baghdad to start, but the central government continues to call for a full annulment.
Editing by Nadia Riva