Masrour Barzani talks gov. formation with Kurdish Islamic party leader

Kurdistan Region Security Council (KRSC) Chancellor Masrour Barzani on Monday met with the leader of the Kurdistan Islamic Movement (KIM), Irfan Abdul-Aziz, and discussed the formation of the new regional government.
author_image Kosar Nawzad

ERBIL (Kurdistan 24) – Kurdistan Region Security Council (KRSC) Chancellor Masrour Barzani on Monday met with the leader of the Kurdistan Islamic Movement (KIM), Irfan Abdul-Aziz, and discussed the formation of the new regional government.

Barzani underlined “the unity of the nation of Kurdistan and paying regard to the public’s interest,” and stated that the people of Kurdistan “deserve more services and must not be made victims of partisan agenda,” a statement from the KRSC read.

This meeting comes as the region's leading parties, the Kurdistan Democratic Party (KDP)—which has nominated Barzani for Kurdistan Regional Government (KRG) premiership—and the Patriotic Union of Kurdistan (PUK), wrap up talks on reaching a final deal.

The KRSC added that the two sides discussed several specifics of government formation, stressing that they were “expediting” the process. Abdul-Aziz, from his end, gave special regards to Barzani’s efforts to bring together the region’s political parties and wished him success in his future role.

In the Sept. 30 elections for the 111–seat Kurdistan Region Parliament, the KIM allied with the Kurdistan Islamic Union (KIU) in the Toward Reform Coalition and secured five seats, all of which were from the KIU. This marked a significant decline for the KIU, which alone occupied eleven seats in the legislature’s previous term, while the KIM held one seat.

The KIU has formally announced they would sit as opposition in the upcoming parliamentary term. Other parties that have proclaimed a similar stance are the single-seat-holder Kurdistan Communist Party – Iraq and the recently-established New Generation party, winner of eight seats.

Similarly, the Kurdistan Islamic Group (KIG) has yet to decide its official position regarding the matter in anticipation of negotiations on a possible deal with the leading KDP.

Over the past few years, the KIU, KIG, and KIM parties have often tried to unite or form a political coalition, but so far none of the attempts have been successful in bringing them under the umbrella of an Islamic alliance.

On Wednesday, parliament is expected to hold a session to vote on a bill that will reinstitute the office of regional president, after which lawmakers would vote on candidates for the post. The KDP has tipped the outgoing regional Prime Minister Nechirvan Barzani to take the role.

Once a new president is elected, he would call upon the leading coalition to name its candidate for the premiership, who would then be tasked with forming his cabinet. 

Editing by John J. Catherine