ERBIL, Kurdistan Region (Kurdistan 24) – The Iraqi Parliament on Tuesday voted on additional measures against the Kurdistan Region to “maintain the unity of Iraq,” including halting financial transactions to Kurdistan banks.
The Parliament in Baghdad said it was moving forward with a formula to implement financial sanctions on the Region while “preserving the interests” of Kurdish citizens.
On Wednesday, Reuters confirmed the Iraqi central bank imposed financial restrictions on four major Kurdish banks but allowed other financial institutions to continue their foreign currency transfers.
The Iraqi federal bank will stop selling dollars to Kurdistan International Bank (KIB), RT bank, Cihan bank, and Erbil Bank as they operate under the Central Bank of Iraq.
“The dollar sale prohibition will be lifted if the central bank sees that the four banks are really cooperating in disclosing their financial transactions,” the source said.
A Kurdish official on Tuesday said the Region’s banks already reported to the central bank in Baghdad, much like the airports of the Kurdish region already reported to the Iraqi Civil Aviation Authority, according to CNBC.
The move came as the Iraqi Parliament prevented Kurdish lawmakers in Baghdad from attending Tuesday’s session as punishment for their participation in the Kurdistan Region’s referendum.
The Iraqi Parliament, led by the Shia National Alliance bloc, can unanimously issue declarations against the Region as none of the Kurdish lawmakers are allowed to attend the votes.
On Sep. 25, the people of the Kurdistan Region and the disputed territories participated in a referendum on independence, with 92.7 percent voting for secession from Iraq.
Since then, the Iraqi Federal Government and parliament have taken harsh measures against the semi-autonomous region of Kurdistan, including a flight ban, as punishment for the vote.
Editing by Karzan Sulaivany