Bazoni supports announcement of Kurdish State
Friday, 15 March 2013 11:25 | | |
Baghdad (AIN) –The Independent MP, Jawad al-Bazoni, of the Iraqi National Alliance stated "If Kurdistan Region decides to announce the Kurdish state, we will support them."
In a press statement received by AIN, he said "It is not for the benefit of the Kurds to withdraw from the political process because they will be the biggest losers since they are the most beneficiary side from the political process in Iraq and they receive their merits completely," noting that "Their withdrawal means transferring their merits to the Arab and results in losing their rights, but if they decides to announce the Kurdish State, we will support them."
"If the Kurdish State is announced, Iraq will be in a Central State and in this case we will have two options. The first one is to grant administrative authorities to the other provinces which will result in canceling many ministries," he added.
"The second option is to make each province as a region, but not as KR which deals with Iraq in a confederation against what is stated in the constitution, where the provinces will not be connected to the Central State in the security, oil and foreign relations fields and many ministries will be cancelled," he concluded.
*** Definitional note - CONFEDERATION : A confederation (or confederacy), in modern political terms, is a permanent union of political units for common action in relation to other units. Usually created by treaty but often later adopting a common constitution, confederations tend to be established for dealing with critical issues (such as defense, foreign affairs, or A COMMON CURRENCY < CAPITALIZATION OF LETTERS ADDED FOR EMPHASIS MY ME >), with the central government being required to provide support for all members.
The nature of the relationship among the states constituting a confederation varies considerably. Likewise, the relationship between the member states, the central government, and the distribution of powers among them is highly variable. Some looser confederations are similar to intergovernmental organizations and even may permit secession from the confederation. Other confederations with stricter rules may resemble federations. A unitary state or federation may decentralize powers to regional or local entities in a confederal form.
INA MP denies breaking alliance with Kurds
Friday, 15 March 2013 08:57 | | |
Baghdad (AIN) –MP, Ali al-Timimi, of Ahrar bloc within the Iraqi National Alliance denied the reports over the breaking INA alliance with the Kurds.
He stated to AIN “These reports over breaking the partnership between INA and the Kurdistani Alliance are groundless.”
“Our alliance with the Kurds is a strategic one,” he added.
“Endorsing the Budget with the absence of the Kurds came because it concerns the people and the future of the country,” he stressed, noting that “The disputes continued for the last few months and they would last for more few months if it was not endorsed in this way.”
“The disputes are too much and without solving them, the will head to the unknown,” he concluded.
*** THINK OF THE DEMONSTRATORS AS A POWDER KEG IN AN AREA WHERE OTHERS ARE FIRING GUNS ( MALIKI / SLC, SADR, THE KURDS, et al ) AT ONE ANOTHER FROM ALL ANGLES - THE LONGER THE SHOOTING CONTINUES WITHOUT AN AGREEMENT TO CEASEFIRE, THE CHANCES OF A INCENDIARY BULLET HITTING THE POWDER KEG INCREASE STATISTICALLY - NO MATTER HOW UNINTENTIONAL THE AIM OF THE SHOOTER(S) - THE DAMAGE IS MADE NONETHELESS BY HAPPENSTANCE - AT THE END OF THE DAY WHETHER INTENTIONAL OR RECKLESS, THE DAMAGE MAY BE DONE ***
IS MP warns from foreign interference in demonstrations
Friday, 15 March 2013 09:45 | | |
Baghdad (AIN) –MP, Noura al-Bijari, of the Iraqiya Slate warned from the foreign interference in the Iraqi affairs if the demonstrations continue for a long time.
Speaking to All Iraq News Agency (AIN), she said "We advised the government to respond to the legitimate demonstrators' demands and request the parliament and the judiciary to respond to the demands that belong to them," noting that "When the demonstrations take long time, there will be foreign interferences in the Iraqi affairs and the citizens will feel that no one consider their opinions."
"The government has to settle the crisis and prove its adherence to settle it to the citizens and the politicians," she added.
"We want practical procedures to settle the crisis and unity among the political sides to neglect the sectarianism and not only through the statements," she concluded.
*** ANOTHER INFORMATIVE WRITING REGARDING ARTICLE 140 ***
Kirkuk Still Divides
Arabs, Kurds in Iraq
By: Abdel Hamid Zebari for Al-Monitor Iraq Pulse. Posted on March 14.
On March 11, 1970, the Kurds of Iraq signed a peace accord with the government that is still to this day celebrated as a declaration of autonomy. Five years later, the Iraqi authorities backed out of the accord following a disagreement over the administrative borders of the Kurdistan Region. Ever since, these borders have become a curse for Arabs and Kurds alike and a fundamental matter of dispute.
Despite the passage of more than 43 years since an autonomy agreement was signed between Iraq’s central government and the Kurds, tensions persist between Baghdad and Erbil, writes Abdel Hamid Zebari.
Border Dispute Between Baghdad and Erbil Persists
Author: Abdel Hamid Zebari
Translated by: Steffi Chakti
The Kurds hold this agreement in high esteem, as it was the first deal through which they reaped benefits. March 11 was made an official holiday commemorated in the Kurdistan region by its official institutions.
The March 11 accords, concluded between the Iraqi government and Kurdish leader Mullah Mustafa Barazani, acknowledged the national rights of Kurds. Moreover, they recognized the legitimacy of their participation in the government and allowed the Kurdish language to be taught in educational institutions.
In an interview with Al-Monitor, Mahmoud Outhman, a Kurdish politician and current MP who was a member of the Kurdish delegation that negotiated the deal, clarified that “when the agreement was announced on March 11, 1970, it was a historical event. At the time — 43 years ago — granting the Kurds civil rights was a weighty issue. Unfortunately, however, the implementation of the agreement has to this day been an exercise in futility.”
Historical sources note that the main dispute between the Iraqi government and Barazani flared up when the latter laid formal claim to Kirkuk’s oil fields, considering their ownership to be part of Kurdish rights. The Iraqi government, at the time, considered the Kurds' insistence on imposing a Kurdish identity on Kirkuk a virtual declaration of war. Consequently, in March 1974, Baghdad unilaterally decreed an autonomy statute — without the consent of Kurds — that was a far cry from the agreement of 1970. The 1974 manifesto’s definition of the autonomous area excluded Kirkuk, Khanaqin and Sinjar, and renamed the province of Kirkuk “al-Ta’mim.”
Outhman added, “In 1974, two weeks before the war began, the government had put on the table an agreement it already knew that we wouldn’t accept. We were asked to accept it and delay any discussion over the border to a later date. However, we were more concerned about the boundary delimitation, since the law could be easily amended, contrary to the borders. Currently, we are facing the same problem with Article 140 of the constitution.”
In 1975, Iran and Iraq concluded what was known as the Algiers Agreement, pursuant to which Mohamad Reza Bahlavi, the Shah of Iran at the time, cut supplies to the Kurds. As a result, the Kurdish movement collapsed and the Iraqi government took over the Kurdish cities once again, imposing the autonomous statute on the three cities of Erbil, al-Sulaymaniyah and Dohuk.
On March 6, 1975, in order to quell the Kurdish armed struggle that was led by Barazani and supported by Bahlavi, the Algiers Agreement was signed and the river boundaries between the two countries were demarcated according to the thalweg line. In 1980, however, Saddam Hussein had abrogated the agreement when the Iranian Shah was ousted and the Islamists took power, leading the region into the First Gulf War.
For eight years, Iraq and Iran were plunged into an endless war that left their infrastructures and economies severely damaged. Subsequently, the former Iraqi regime was at odds with the Gulf countries — notably Kuwait — which supported Iraq during its war on Iran, only to be occupied by Hussein in 1990. Hussein was down and out after the US liberated Kuwait. Back then, an international economic blockade was imposed on Iraq and the Kurdish region, which was under Hussein’s control, broke out in upheaval in 1991.
Nearly 43 years after the signing of the 1970 agreement, the impasse between the Kurdish government in Erbil and the federal government in Baghdad is still standing over the demand of the former to add Kirkuk, along with part of Nineveh and Diyala provinces, to the autonomous region. However, other Arab political powers are opposing the claim.
In 2003, when the former Iraqi regime fell, the ruling system was altered. The aforementioned provinces were to be dealt with according to Article 58 of the Law of Administration for the State of Iraq for the Transitional Period, which, when the permanent constitution was approved, was replaced with Article 140 of the constitution.
Article 58 stipulates that the Iraqi Transitional Government, and especially the Iraqi Property Claims Commission and other relevant bodies, shall expeditiously take measures to remedy the injustice caused by the previous regime’s practices in regard to altering the demographic character of certain regions, including Kirkuk
Clause B of the same article reads: “The previous regime also manipulated and changed administrative boundaries for political ends. The Presidency Council of the Iraqi Transitional Government shall make recommendations to the National Assembly on remedying these unjust changes in the permanent constitution.”
Additionally, clause C of Article 58 notes, “The permanent resolution of disputed territories, including Kirkuk, shall be deferred until after these measures are completed, a fair and transparent census has been conducted and the permanent constitution has been ratified.”
In 2005, the permanent constitution was approved and Article 58 was replaced with Article 140, which reads: “The executive authority shall undertake the necessary steps to complete the implementation of the requirements of all subparagraphs of Article 58 of the Transitional Administrative Law. The responsibility placed upon the executive branch of the Iraqi Transitional Government stipulated in Article 58 of the Transitional Administrative Law shall extend and continue to the executive authority elected in accordance with this constitution, provided that it accomplishes completely (normalization and census and concludes with a referendum in Kirkuk and other disputed territories to determine the will of their citizens), by a date not to exceed Dec. 31, 2007.”
After all these years, and even though the Iraqi constitution was ratified and the Kurds have participated alongside the Arabs in governing the state, the dispute over administrative borders is still deadlocked. Kurds still insist on the Kurdish identity of Kirkuk and some parts of Nineveh and Diayala provincs, amid vehement Arab objection.
Outhman noted, “The Baath party used to say that autonomy was a concept linked to the people and not to the land; the land was theirs. As far as I can see, the convictions of the current political leaders in regard to the federal system are different from ours. The majority of the influential powers are wishing for a strong, centralized rule fortified with armed forces in order to marginalize other groups. They do not believe in partnership, nor in the constitution they signed.”
Abdel Hamid Zebari is a contributing writer for Al-Monitor’s Iraq Pulse. A reporter from Erbil who works in the field of print journalism and radio, he has published several reports in local and world media, including Agence France-Press and Radio Free Iraq (Radio Free Europe).
Speculation Over Iran's Role
In Iraqi Dinar Devaluation
By: Omar al-Shaher for Al-Monitor Iraq Pulse. Posted on March 14.
There were conflicting accounts of the reasons for the rise in the value of the US dollar against the Iraqi dinar earlier this month. Politicians and economists have said that Iranian companies boosted the value of the dollar against the dinar by entering the Central Bank of Iraq’s (CBI) auction for hard-currency sales and buying large quantities in order to smuggle them into Iran. On the other hand, a former senior official at the CBI said the rise is linked to increased government revenue from oil sales, leading to an increase in government spending.
Iran has been accused of meddling in Iraqi financial affairs after the Iraqi dinar lost value against the dollar at the beginning of March, writes Omar al-Shaher.
Iran Accused Over Iraqi Dinar Devaluation
Author: Omar al-Shaher
Translated by: Joelle El-Khoury
Categories :Originals Iraq Iran
The weekly bulletin released by the CBI says 1,260 Iraqi dinars are now trading to the dollar, a level not been reached since last year.
A member of the Iraqi parliamentary finance committee said the value of the dollar increased against the dinar because some Iraqi banks have stopped converting dinars to dollars and have sold dollars to exchange companies at prices favorable to the banks.
Hussein al-Yasiri said some banks have stopped selling dollars to regular customers and instead have been selling them to exchange companies. This has prompted Iraqis to buy dollars from the exchange companies at prices favorable to the companies. The exchanges are not subject to government monitoring.
Ahmed al-Alwani, head of the Iraqi parliament’s economic committee, said Iran’s need for hard currency as a result of international sanctions has prompted Iran to mobilize Iraqi partners to help the country get dollars through the CBI auction.
Prior to its recent rise, the dollar ranged between 1,245 and 1,250 dinars; the dollar was valued at 1,200 dinars in much of 2012.
Economist Khaled Haidar said Iraqi brokers are buying hard currency at the CBI auction and selling it to Iranian companies, which then smuggle the currency into Iran in order to address its substantial hard-currency deficit.
He added: “This has increased the demand for the dollar at the CBI auction.”
It seems that the apparent role of Iranian companies in Iraq’s dollar sales has pushed the CBI to tighten control procedures for the sale of hard currency, which has led to reduced quantities of dollars being sold.
In 2012, the CBI sold at its auction $200 million to 15 private bank customers. This year, the amount has fallen to $70 million. This has resulted in a gap between supply and demand, and led to the rise in the value of the dollar at the CBI’s official auction and in the gray market.
Ahmed Bureihi, the former senior official at the CBI, denied that there was any suspicion of political involvement in the rise of the value of the dollar in the Iraqi market.
Bureihi said Iraqi oil revenue increased, which in turn increased government spending. He added, “The increase in government spending means higher per-capita income. Subsequently, spending increases, and there is an increased need for importing goods. Providing these goods requires an increased demand for foreign currency, which led to the increased exchange rate.”
He added: “Iran has nothing to do with the increased exchange rate. The CBI sells foreign currency to Iraqi customers to be used in funding trade transactions outside the country.”
Bureihi said he believes that “there are Iraqi traders who defraud the CBI and provide counterfeit documents of virtual imports to Iraq. However, they are [exchanging goods with] Iran and Syria — their commercial targets — trying to maximize their profits. This has nothing to do with political issues.”
He said, “No supervisory authority in Iraq has noted a recent increase in these traders’ activities, which means that their activities have nothing to do with the rise of the US dollar exchange rate.”
He added: “Politicians who spoke about Iranian companies smuggling hard currency coming from the CBI auction to Iran need to worry about resolving the chronic political crisis in Iraq and leave monetary policy to experts.”
He emphasized that “the control procedures over the outflow of currency from the CBI auction continue, yet the full control over this issue needs time.” He then added, “This is an issue that affects all countries in the world; the incentives are aimed at maximizing the traders’ profits.”
Omar al-Shaher is a contributor to Al-Monitor’s Iraq Pulse. His writing has appeared in a wide range of publications including France’s LeMonde, the Iraqi Alesbuyia magazine, Egypt’s Al-Ahaly and the Elaph website.
Thousands of worshipers flocked to the sites of holding Fri- prayers in Diyala.
Baquba / NINA /--Thousands of worshipers flocked to the sites where Fri-prayers dobbed / Fri-for paying loyalty to Imam A bu Hanifah/ and merged in different grand mosques of Diyala province to participate in these unified prayers which held in six administrative units of the province.
A source in the Directorate of the Sunni Endowment of Diyala said to NINA reporter : "Thousands of worshipers headed to the sites to hold unified prayers in Sariyah mosque in Baquba , Almoalimeen area in Muqdadiya , Baladruz and other mosques in Jalawla ,Qara Tepe, Mansuriyah districts to participate in Friday prayers in support of Imam Abu Hanifa amid tight security measures taken by the Iraqi forces .
Thousands later .. Khatib Square pride and dignity: the arena will not close, but the implementation of the demands
15-03-2013 | (Voice of Iraq)
Thousands in the yard of pride and dignity in Juma 'victory Imam Azam' demanding implementation of their demands, renewing their sit-in until the implementation.
The Friday sermon 'victory Imam Azam' in the yard of pride and dignity in Anbar province, Sheikh Qusai al-Janabi, demonstrations and sit-ins will continue until the implementation of the demands.
He said: Square pride and karma will not close until the release of detainees and prisoners, and the implementation of the demands without exception, stressing that the security forces, forced elders and scholars of Anbar to sign a pledge after the launch of the word (God is greatest), and this has not been, the word (God is greatest ) will remain high.
He added: that the demonstrators and protesters will continue until its demands, without exception, and continued: butcher who kills in Syria is the same butcher who kills Iraqis.
Nineveh demonstrators demanding to bring down the Maliki government
15-03-2013 | (Voice of Iraq)
Demonstrators have demanded the Nineveh after end their prayers consolidated in mosques in the city of Mosul and around Aqdatha the departure of Prime Minister Nuri al-Maliki from power.
He said the reporter Agency (news): Thousands of demonstrators headed advocates and scientists Nineveh and delegations from the governor of Anbar, Diyala, Salahuddin, who Users Say to the city of Mosul to participate demonstrations started from the mosques that have been identified where prayer consolidated a collector safe and inclusive vegetables and compassion and the Great Mosque as well as mosques spend Baaj Qayyarah and Nimrod and fresh bathroom participate of today Batjth demonstrations Liberal Square to demand the departure of al-Maliki and topple his government.
He said the demonstrators stressed that their resolve not stop when to topple the government of Maliki.
The demonstrators insisted on the implementation of their demands, the most prominent fall of the central government headed by al-Maliki government restructuring ago today of Ministers of the Kurdistan Alliance and the Iraqi List.
Barzani and Kerry exchanged telephone and views on the crisis in Iraq.
Arbel / NINA /-- President of Kurdistan region Massoud Barzani received a phone call from US , Secretary of State , John Kerry, this morning.
A statement by the presidency of the region, "said U.S. Secretary of State expressed during the call-up his satisfaction of the close ties between the two sides touching the current situation in Iraq and how to deal with the ongoing deep crisis faced by Iraq.
The statement added : " Barzani reviewed through dialing the real image of the current situation in Iraq particularly the critic position of Kurdistan Region.
Barzani congratulated Mr. John Kerry, on the occasion of the assumption of his new duties as his country's Foreign Minister, and wished him success in the performance of his functions.
Abu Risha calls for Maliki's government to resign after the incident to storm the building of the Ministry of Justice
Called Sheikh Ahmed Abu Risha, former head of the Iraqi Awakening, Maliki's government to resign being proven failure, announcing near a conference to Anbar tribes to consolidate the position of the protesters.
. Abu Risha said in a speech to the protesters in the yard of pride and dignity in Juma 'victory Imam Azam' on the Maliki government to resign being a proven failure, the latest incident happened yesterday in storming the building of the Ministry of Justice.
He added: the government of double dealing with its people, through the killing of demonstrators, calling Deputy Prime Minister Saleh al-Mutlaq to withdraw from the Committee of Five it did not implement the demands of the demonstrators.
Abu Risha announced, near the conference for elders and dignitaries, professors and intellectuals of Anbar, to get a unified position of the demonstrators, and continued: if the will of the government to negotiate they should check out the squares sit