Changes to Iraqi budget bill against constitution, says KRG spokesperson
ERBIL (Kurdistan 24) – The recent changes in the Iraqi draft budget law go against the country’s constitution, the Kurdistan Region’s spokesperson told Kurdistan 24 on Wednesday, reiterating Erbil’s commitment to the agreements reached with Baghdad.
The Iraqi parliament’s finance committee recently approved changes to the three-year budget bill, which contains clauses that undermine KRG’s authority, as well as violate the agreements brokered between Erbil and Baghdad, including the April 4 deal to resume Kurdish oil flow.
“The changes adopted by the [parliamentary] finance committee are against the constitution and the Erbil-Baghdad agreements,” Jotiar Adil, the KRG spokesperson, told Kurdistan 24.
Erbil is committed to the deals struck with Baghdad, the government official said, adding “some entities” try to undermine the positive relations between the two governments.
In light of previous agreements, including the temporary oil deal reached on April 4 to resume the export of Kurdistan Region’s oil, which has been halted since March 25 at the request of Baghdad after claiming victory of a Paris-based arbitration ruling against Ankara, the KRG has unequivocally objected to the amendments to the budget bill adopted by the finance committee.
Muthana Ameen, a Kurdish lawmaker in the Iraqi parliament, warned on Tuesday that if the political consensus that formed the basis of the current Iraqi government is not honored, it will be the “beginning of dissolving the government.”
The international community, including US and European officials, have supported the agreements between Erbil and Baghdad and encouraged all sides to implement them in the interest of all Iraqis.
Haydar Lami, a leader from the State of the Law Coalition – led by the former Iraqi Prime Minister Nouri Al-Maliki – also shared concerns regarding attempts to derail previously agreed-upon consensus.
“In order for the country to maintain peace and security, the agreements should be implemented,” the Shiite leader added.
The management of hydrocarbons as well as the Kurdish share in the Iraqi budget have been a source of tensions between the governments for more than a decade.