‘Kurds broke taboo in Iraq, discussed independence with Baghdad’
ERBIL, Kurdistan Region (Kurdistan24) – A high-ranked member of the Kurdistan Region delegation that visited Baghdad said on Friday discussions of independence with the federal government of Iraq broke a taboo.
Mohammad Haji Mahmoud, Head of the Kurdistan Socialist Party and a member of the delegation that visited Baghdad, spoke to Kurdistan24 about the recent meeting.
Mahmoud said the President of the Kurdistan Region Masoud Barzani had begun discussions of Kurdistan’s independence with Iraqi Prime Minister Haider al-Abadi before delegates from both sides joined.
On Sep. 29, a top delegation from the Kurdistan Region headed by President Barzani visited Baghdad and met with different Iraqi officials and political parties.
The group discussed the Mosul military operation as well as economic and political issues between the Kurdistan Regional Government (KRG) and the federal government of Iraq.
“Any topics can be discussed. We have a long history with each other in this country, and through dialogue and negotiation, I believe we can resolve our problems,” Mahmoud said, quoting what Abadi said in the meeting.
According to Mahmoud, Abadi said both sides could address issues in a better way, regardless of if the issues can be resolved by Kurdistan’s independence or remaining part of Iraq.
“We have not discussed the details of independence,” the Kurdish politician continued. “What we discussed with the Iraqi government was once considered taboo.”
He stated the disagreement on the topic of independence between both sides might differ as the KRG seeks full independence while Baghdad could request confederation only.
“The details of the matter will be discussed later by the committees of both sides,” he concluded.
President Barzani had previously revealed the campaign to hold a referendum on Kurdistan’s independence would occur by the end of 2016.
“The people of the Kurdistan Region have the right to decide on their future,” the President said before.
Editing by Karzan Sulaivany