US commends President Barzani’s stepping down, supports KRG’s new leadership

“A strong KRG within a unified and federal Iraq is essential to its long-term stability.”

ERBIL, Kurdistan Region (Kurdistan 24) – The US State Department in a statement on Monday commended the decision made by the Kurdistan Region President to not extend his term and promised to support the Kurdistan Regional Government’s (KRG) new leadership.

“The US commends the decision of Masoud Barzani not to seek an additional term as President of the Iraqi Kurdistan Region and the vote of the Iraqi Kurdistan Parliament to distribute presidential authorities to other KRG institutions,” the statement said.

It added that “President Barzani is a historic figure and courageous leader of his people, most recently in our common fight to destroy Islamic State (IS),” emphasizing that the decision “represents an act of statesmanship during a difficult period.”

According to the statement, the US will actively engage with the Iraqi PM Haider al-Abadi and the KRG PM Nechirvan Barzani and his deputy Qubad Talabani. “A strong KRG within a unified and federal Iraq is essential to its long-term stability.”

The US State Department called on all Kurdish parties to support the KRG as it works to resolve pending issues over the remainder of its term and prepares for elections in 2018.

The US also called upon the Iraqi government and the KRG under its new leadership to work urgently to resolve the pending issues under the Iraqi constitution and welcomed the recent decision from Abadi to begin a new dialogue with the KRG.

 “We have been encouraged by the security dialogue that has taken place in recent days, and call for an end to all confrontations and clashes,” the statement read.

“We will continue to work with all parties as they address these issues for the benefit of all Iraqis. It is time for all parties to look to the future and focus on a peaceful resolution of disputes under the Iraqi constitution,” the statement concluded.


Editing by Sam A.