The absence of Al-Iraqiya and the Kurds disrupts quorum in parliament
29-03-2013 | (Voice of Iraq)
BAGHDAD - Jawdat Kazem
Friday, March 29, 2013
Iraqi parliament postponed its meeting yesterday, Sunday, to a lack of quorum due to the absence of the Vice «Iraqi List» »Kurdistan Alliance for the session.
A member of Iraqi MP Hamza Alkrtani told «life» that «the absence of a large number of Congress list and the Kurds was a major cause to postpone the hearing to next Sunday.
He pointed out that «the deputies of the National Alliance and the Kurdish block change and blocs of dialogue led by Saleh al-Mutlaq and the solution led by Jamal al-Karbouli, who attended the session, the deputies of the Kurdistan Alliance and united, were absent».
He pointed out that «the agenda of the meeting includes a vote on a set of laws, including the establishment of the International Academy of Anti-Corruption as an international organization, and the draft law on disengagement House Mesopotamia for printing with the central bank and attached to the Ministry of Education.
He added: «was supposed to discuss the issue of holding elections in the provinces of Mosul and Anbar, after the vote on the laws listed on the agenda of the meeting, but the lack of a quorum prevented it.
He ruled Alkrtani overturn the decision to postpone the elections in Anbar and Mosul and said: «I think that the government is committed to the decision to postpone the elections in these two provinces and may change according to government data convictions situation on the ground there.
But a source in the cell's security crisis supervising the calendar situation in Anbar and Mosul told to «life» that «the Commission will report the final next Sunday to the Commander in Chief of the armed forces for the security situation to take the appropriate decision to postpone the elections after discussing the report in the Council of Ministers during its next week» .
The source pointed out that «the report paves the way for positive overturn the decision of the government note that the report prepared by the Commission upheld the Electoral Commission in the two provinces.
Furthermore, the Electoral Commission announced the election, the number of international observers who will oversee the provincial elections on 20 April next reached 314 observers.
The director of the constituency in the election commission Mekdad Sharifi told that «the Commission's preparations for the elections in the provinces of Anbar and Nineveh continuous.
The Cabinet decided last week to postpone the elections in the provinces of Nineveh and Anbar, noting that «may cancel the decision if the reasons that led to the adoption.
Barzani linking gone to Baghdad to the availability of 'guarantees' to resolve the crisis
29-03-2013 | (Voice of Iraq)
Erbil - as Francis
Friday, March 29, 2013
The President of the Kurdistan region Massoud Barzani readiness to meet with officials in Baghdad and the search to end the political crisis if there is «guarantees for the application of the agreements», in the face of Prime Minister region Barzani letter to the federal government reassure them that the agreements to be held by his government with Ankara would be within the framework of the Iraqi constitution .
And was the son of the brother of Iraqi President Jalal Talabani ARRAS Sheikh Jingye sent a letter to the President of the Region invites him to «launch a historic initiative, not to say one again that people (Kurdish), he can not run itself. He said: «I wish I could go to Baghdad without hesitation, in a reply, expressed Barzani yesterday for lack of reluctance Go« to anywhere in the world in order to gain the people of Kurdistan, if returns positive », explained:« It is known that I went several times to Baghdad and received promises, and we have concluded agreements are in favor of the region and the political process in Iraq, but they (the Iraqi government) did not respect their signatures, and Tansloa of the implementation of those promises. Barzani concluded his letter by asking for «guarantees to resolve differences in the case to go to Baghdad?».
Boycotting the ministers and deputies of the Kurds in Baghdad, the Council of Ministers and the Parliament since the seventh of March the current protest against the pass the budget b »majority», pending a final decision issued by the meeting of a committee of heads of the Kurdish groups to report to the President of the Region is the Diagnosis «reasons, and the negatives and positives in the case continue to interrupt or return to Baghdad.
On the other hand, stressed Barzani presided over a meeting of the Council of Ministers after concluding a visit to Turkey, that «any cooperation or agreement conducted Government of the Territory with Turkey in the field of energy would be within the framework of the Iraqi Constitution», in an attempt to reassure Baghdad that refuse contract deals between the parties, most notably oil pipeline from the region towards Turkey.
He stressed that he met with German Chancellor Angela Merkel during his participation in the European Energy Conference and invited them to «support oil policy pursued by the Kurdistan Regional Government in the framework of the Iraqi constitution, and expressed the readiness of his government to provide energy to Europe via Turkey.
The head of the Presidium of the region, Fouad Hussein, said in a statement yesterday that «relations between the Territory and Ankara are in the interest of Iraq.
Mutlaq back to Maliki in the reconciliation necessary
28-03-2013 | (Voice of Iraq)
Talk | David Ali | Baghdad
The political crisis is still stuck in the jaw differences but the new equation portend different map for the balance of power in the next phase, Vsaleh Mutlaq, leader of the National Dialogue Front and Jamal Karbouli leader block solution arranged papers and return to the government, which up to the number of vacancies to twenty ministerial chair.
Step-Mutlaq and Karbouli in the event has become a reality and the withdrawal of Moqtada al-Sadr from the government means exchanging the roles of the key players.
Back-Mutlaq of the owners - who previously described dictator in the footsteps of Saddam - earned by defection new expected in the ranks of the Iraqi and also a lifeline to the Maliki government, which is almost on the verge of collapse, as well as the chest will find himself with allies different he is now taking positions approach to the forces of Sunni political and Kurdish opposition to the owners.
Says Deputy Prime Minister Saleh al-Mutlaq said in an interview for "Talk" that "our return has not yet ratified and we Nrhenha meet the government to the demands of the demonstrators and ask Maliki to convene a meeting of the Council of Ministers have its agenda a discussion of the list of demands."
The news broke back Mutlaq Karbouli to the government since the night of 17 March 2013, after the end of a festive dinner set up by al-Maliki for the two leaders concluded a preliminary agreement on their return to government.
Says a source familiar with the meeting dinner for "discussion" The leaders Dialogue Front and mass solution convinced that advertising back so quickly lead to the creation of a new crisis with the public "Iraqi" headed by Allawi, as well as having security problems related to the possibility of receiving candidates blocs threats death, especially in areas which invokes the Maliki government months ago.
The source alleges that "Maliki is noted concerns is appreciated well, but was waiting for a quick step back, In practice time is not in favor, especially with the go-Sayyid Muqtada al-Sadr away in before him with him could announce his withdrawal permanently from the government after commented attend his ministers in Cabinet meetings."
Security there a bigger problem faced by both Mutlaq and Karbouli, Vvrivehma obtained in the current month on reports that supporters and candidates blocs will become in the crossfire in the assassination in the event announced to return to the government, as well as they will be placed in a kind of political isolation within the opposition center for the owners, especially in the Anbar province.
The source confirms that "a telephone conversation between al-Mutlaq, one of the leaders of Iraq, the latter said, addressing the leader of the National Dialogue Front, if not afraid of the anger of the street if I went back to the government, you have to fear for your family."
Since the news emerged return Mutlaq and Karbouli to government competed Dawa members to the local media to welcome the decision, but an early announcement about the return gig leaders "solution," and "Dialogue Front" because it put them in an embarrassing situation, after they need more time to prepare Advertise.
Because of embarrassment forced deputies from mass-Mutlaq to deny the news back, says MP Hamza Alkrtani for "discussion" that "ministers who are returning to the Cabinet rebels on the decision of the Iraqi bloc which action outside its control."
It seems that the expected return of Ministers Mutlaq and Karbouli led to a split within the Iraqi List, and appeared a clear disagreement between Parliament Speaker Osama al-Nujaifi, who is one of the main decision-makers in Allawi's bloc, and between al-Mutlaq.
Nujaifi called the Front for National Dialogue "small faction can not make a decision to return to the government," Mutlaq's response by saying that the National Dialogue Front, "the heart of the Iraqi List, and basic Rkizatha They founded."
But no need to exchange Mutlaq and Najafi accusations to recognize public opinion as fragile mass "Iraqi" These recent disjointed anyway, and the best proof that it has entered provincial elections in three blocks, the Iraqi Arab and Iraqi Free group united.
Postponement of the elections may be in the interest Mutlaq, who fear for the future of his influence in the Sunni areas and incident was attacking him in the yard of the sit-Anbar demonstrate that, they also reveal the size of personal differences between the leaders of Iraq.
The source says political "debate" that "Saleh al-Mutlaq, one of the political leaders who proposed the postponement of provincial elections in Ramadi and Mosul."
In general, al-Maliki will get the relative earnings of the division of Iraq and the return of al-Mutlaq, is in an embarrassing situation because of parking his government on the line, with the absence of about 20 ministers reported.
Maliki may find in the "reconciliation of necessity" with al-Mutlaq and Karbouli cover temporarily to compensate for the strike, which his government has received from the Sadrists and the team Najafi.
Back Mutlaq and Karbouli if it was practically the masses will cover bags Iraqi, is likely in the form of the agreement, which seems on the whole just leaks from here and there to be al-Mutlaq and defense minister, but the dispute until the hour of the preparation of this article is concentrated with Maliki on the powers Mutlaq compared to the tasks of the commander of the forces armed.
Hawija attacking al-Mutlaq and Karbouli and described by the "sellers of the year," and confirms that collected would be "against the traitors"
28-03-2013 | (Voice of Iraq)
Long-Presse / Kirkuk
Shen stream (popular movement) in Hawija in Kirkuk, on Thursday, lashed out at Deputy Prime Minister for Services Affairs Saleh al-Mutlaq and the leader of the solution Jamal Karbouli, and accused them that they "sold the year" to please the prime minister, meanwhile, announced demonstrators Hawija that Fri tomorrow will be charged title "No compromise."
A member of the General Authority for Jean coordinating mobility popular in Iraq, Khalid Mafraji in an interview to the (long-Presse) that "Everyone knows that the demonstrations that began more than three months were the result of injustice, marginalization and exclusion done by Prime Minister Nuri al-Maliki and his policies procrastination, postponement and Engineering Crisis Despite all this protests peaceful, legitimate and involving the clergy and elites and clans and national and oppressed and Liberal. "
He Mafraji that "the masses Almentvdh demanded ministers Iraqi withdrawal in support of the legitimate demands Vanksmoa into two camps, one included honorable who believe their cause fair and were part of their own people and مظلومية parents are ministers of finance, agriculture, science and technology from the list are united and the second camp, which embraced the humiliation is part of the policy of marginalization, which includes Mutlaq Karbouli and were affiliated with a political-Maliki. "
The Deputy Prime Minister for Services Affairs Saleh al-Mutlaq and the Education Minister Mohammad Tamim and Industry Minister Mohammad al-Karbouli had returned to attend's share Cabinet held in 03.26.2013 and end their boycott them which was considered the Iraqi List, a departure from the policy, to announce Haider Mulla leader of the Front for National Dialogue National-led al-Mutlaq, then in one day, "the death of the Iraqi List," accusing "Islamists neo" in the Iraqi List of spreading "lies political" targeting President Dialogue Front Saleh al-Mutlaq, and as he emphasized that they are linked to "al-Qaeda and Turkey, Qatar and Iran", he pointed out that they "They were planning to terrorize the people to elect a specific list."
He Mafraji that "the masses decided that al-Mutlaq and Karbouli and Tamim outside arenas and will not accept representation and their presence and their work and consider them involved and conspirators and part of the crime carried out against Sunni areas that have been injustice and displacement so they day perspective rebelling outside consensus Sunnis and part of the policy-Maliki and do not have any balance and lost their fans. "
For his part, announced the coordinator Square (jealousy, honor) in the district of Hawija in Kirkuk, said Friday tomorrow, will be renamed (not compromise).
Said Abdul Malik al-Jubouri said in an interview to the (long-Presse) that "brought us tomorrow will be a message to all tyrants and traitors that we are steadfast in the yard of jealousy and honor will not back down," adding, "We expect that participation will be great and prayer will witness the participation of all the tribes in the south and west of Kirkuk."
He announced Anbar Matsamu, Wednesday, that the meeting of representatives sit yards in six provinces that took place today in the gray concluded by emphasizing "peaceful and cohesion arenas sit", and innocence of the Deputy Prime Minister for Services Affairs Saleh al-Mutlaq and Minister of returning to government.
Mutlaq criticized today, in remarks broadcast on Al-Iraqiya semi-governmental organizations, the performance of Iraqi parliament speaker Osama al-Nujaifi and other leaders of the Iraqi, said he was in possession of "harsh responses" on charges of leaders of the list, and some accused of plotting to assassinate him.
A spokesman for the list are united Zafir al-Ani, headed by Parliament Speaker Osama Najafi face, on Thursday, a "thin" to the Deputy Prime Minister Saleh al-Mutlaq, who drew sharp criticism for the speaker and finance minister resigned recently, while student-Mutlaq as "not to offend" , said he united would not be drawn to the "side battles" rejoices for the most important to them, but "discrimination."
Addressing Ani-Mutlaq said, "I am confident Bank will think carefully about my words and you brother great and our political always heard him remarks biased to the masses, with a history and a national Musharraf to address the injustice and know before others that there is no any temptations or benefits electoral or political can parallel goal our unity and تكاتفنا, not even the provincial elections, do not listen to those most important to them but our squad. "
The Ani "side I will do what conscientiously national and my duty political prevent any statement which abuse or slander to yourself decent, or brothers in the Iraqi list of Arab honor Briacetk her, and I'm sure you will do ideals even without hope and long brother dear, and noble leader, and as long as our dear united. "
She (list united) were part of the Iraqi List led by House Speaker Osama Najafi, yesterday Tuesday, for "regret" to attend the Deputy Prime Minister Saleh al-Mutlaq and Minister of Industry and Education Cabinet meeting for the day, and promised a decision Audthmha departure from "Iraqi politics," and stressing that the "justifications" given by the returning of the province "is not enough" and represents "multiples" of the demonstrations.
The list of united a number of leaders of the Iraqi List current as finance minister resigned Rafie al-Issawi and head of the parliamentary bloc of the Iraqi Salman Jumaili and head of the Turkmen Front Arshad Salhi and House of Representatives, Salim al and Muhammad Iqbal and appearance Janabi and Nabil Hrbo and Walid Mohammadi and Diyala governor Omar Humairi, as well as leader of the Iraqi Awakening Ahmed Abu Risha , and head of the Anbar provincial council Jassim Halbusi.
By: Ali Abel Sadah for Al-Monitor Iraq Pulse. Posted on March 28.
Sunni politicians of the Iraqiya list, led by Ayad Allawi, have deemed Saleh al-Mutlaq, head of the Iraqi Front for National Dialogue, a traitor, particularly since he shifted his stance on Prime Minister Nouri al-Maliki, recently decided to return to the cabinet, and held ministerial seats that once belonged to the rest of the Iraqiya factions.
As Iraq continues to struggle with widespread anti-government protests, the prominent Sunni Iraqiya list has gone through a series of defections that have dealt a serious blow to its influence, writes Ali Abel Sadah.
Strong Disputes Hit the Allawi Bloc
Author: Ali Abel Sadah
First Published: March 28, 2013
Translated by: Joelle El-Khoury
Categories :Originals Iraq
Yet, the exchange of accusations between Sunni leaders in Iraq does not eliminate the bitter truth, from which the political faction that represents them has suffered for years. Since the 2010 legislative elections, the Iraqiya bloc has sustained harsh blows and defections that have undermined its strength in the face of its Shiite rival, Maliki.
Haidar al-Mulla, a leader from the Iraqi Front for National Dialogue, led by Mutlaq, was clear in a new conference that Al-Monitor attended, saying: “The Iraqiya bloc is dead.”
Mulla, a spokesman for the Iraqiya bloc, believes that religious forces seized control of decision-making in the list. In light of the almost total absence of secular leader Ayad Allawi, Islamist leaders — which took the reins of the bloc — have emerged. Among them: Rafi al-Issawi, a leader of Hamas al-Iraq, and Osama al-Nujaifi, who has a devout Sunni audience in Iraq.
Mulla’s news conference was the latest indication of the fragmentation of the Iraqiya bloc. It was one of the few times journalists have listened to Mulla as he spoke candidly of the Allawi bloc’s political situation. Mulla talked about the death of the Iraqiya List a few hours after Mutlaq, and Sunni ministers of education, Mohammad Tamim, and industry and minerals, Ahmad al-Karbouli, returned to cabinet.
In parallel, the government announced having decided to include the Sunni politicians that returned to the cabinet in the ministerial committee in charge of examining demonstrator demands, approving the draft law on seized and confiscated movable and immovable property of the former regime figures, and submitting it to parliament.
Mulla said: “Within the Iraqiya List, there is a sort of division around the national project that seeks to preserve Iraq’s unity and combat political sectarianism, as well as a divisive sectarian project, led by the neo-Islamists, who seek to mislead some tribes and religious men in order to garner their support.”
Maliki finally took advantage of the division in the Iraqiya list, and brought back Sunni leaders Saleh al-Mutlaq and Jamal al-Karboli to the cabinet meetings.
Sami al-Askari, a senior Shiite politician from the State of Law Coalition, says: “What might be called Maliki's success in the recent political crisis goes back to controlling the keys to the political game on the one hand, and taking advantage of opposition weakness and fragmentation on the other. The Allawi Iraqiya list suffers from internal crises, and is characterized as a dead political bloc.”
Mishan al-Saadi, a leader from the Iraqi Front for National Dialogue, says: “The Iraqiya list no longer exists in reality, and has presently turned into three blocs, as a result of political secessions in recent months.”
Mutlaq’s move opened the Pandora’s box of differences between the Iraqiya leaders.
Amid all these differences, the Iraqiya list said in an official statement issued Wednesday [March 27] that the return of Mutlaq to the recent cabinet meeting is designed to undermine the national front. The list called on Mutlaq to reconsider his calculations and alignment with his people in the Iraqi street, in a reference to Iraqi Sunnis.
The Iraqi government held a special meeting to discuss demonstrator demands in the cities of Ramadi (west) and Mosul (north). The meeting came at the request of Mutlaq and Karbouli to have official guarantees that Maliki would implement “the demonstrators’ legitimate demands.”
In its statement obtained by Al-Monitor, the Iraqiya list called on Mutlaq “not to be a false witness of the current government’s approach for division, marginalization and political sectarianism.” The Iraqiya confirmed that “the political process in Iraq is moving in a dangerous direction, after Maliki monopolized political and security decision, and threw out the principle of national partnership, which was established by the government.”
The Iraqiya list is in a very bad situation. From a practical point of view, its political forces are distributed over three different factions, after secessions.
These factions: the Iraqiya al-Arabiya [the Arabic Iraqiya], which includes the Solution [al-Hal], led by Jamal al-Karboli; the Iraqi Republican Assembly, led by Saad Asim al-Janabi; and the Iraqi Front for National dialogue, led by Saleh al-Mutlaq.
Moreover, there is the Free Iraqiya, which includes MPs who have taken personal issue with Allawi, and Maliki benefited from their services. The third faction is represented by Allawi, through his traditional contingency known as the National Accord Movement.
Ali Abel Sadah is a writer and journalist from Baghdad working in both Iraqi and Arab media. He was the editorial manager of a number of local newspapers, and was a political and cultural reporter for over 10 years. He has published in various newspapers and magazines covering Iraqi political affairs, human rights and civil society.
KRG Prime Minister Promotes
Kurdish Oil on European Visit
By: Abdel Hamid Zebari for Al-Monitor Iraq Pulse. Posted on March 28.
The prime minister of the Kurdistan Regional Government (KRG), Nechirvan Barazani, has taken part in an international conference on energy security and foreign affairs organized by the Christian Democratic Party and headed by German Chancellor Angela Merkel. The visit to Germany has sparked European interest in Kurdish crude oil.
Kurdistan Regional Government Prime Minster Nechirvan Barzani has used a trip to Europe to drum up interest in Kurdish oil, as the region announces plans to expand its export capabilities, writes Abdel Hamid Zebari.
The Kurdistan Region of Iraq Seeks a Greater Turkish and European Role in Its Oil Investment
Author: Abdel Hamid Zebari
Translated by: Steffi Chakti
Categories :Originals Iraq
Once back, Barzani headed to Ankara to discuss the expansion of an oil pipeline from Kurdistan to Turkey. The project is seen by Kurdish politicians as crucial for ensuring the independence of the oil sector in Iraq. The federal government, however, opposes this initiative.
Clearly, the US is aware of Kurdish ambitions to independently invest their oil. Media sources close to US Secretary of State John Kerry shared that Kerry has called Massoud Barzani, president of Iraq’s Kurdistan Region, twice in the few past days to encourage him to abandon unilateral negotiations with Turkey.
According to press sources, Kerry has asked Barzani to halt exporting oil to Turkey, which it has been doing for a while, to avoid deepening the rift between the Kurdistan Region and the federal government concerning this issue.
Baghdad refuses to recognize the oil contracts — 50 in total — which Kurdistan signed with foreign companies. It considers the exporting operations to Turkey — which are currently taking place to replenish the region’s needs for oil derivatives, as the Kurdistan government claims — smuggling.
The Kurdish government is currently planning to expand an oil pipeline to link the region’s oil wells to European markets through Turkey. Kurdistan did not ask for Baghdad’s approval, given that the constitution grants the region the right to develop the infrastructure of the oil sector, prompting vehement objections. The US also had its own reservations.
Last week, Prime Minister Barzani met with Chancellor Merkel on the sidelines of an international conference for energy security and foreign affairs.
On the issue of natural resources, Barzani announced that the KRG and Iraq could play an important role in helping Turkey, Germany and Europe diversify energy sources and ensure supply security. He added that the KRG could help to contribute to the long-term gas-supply needs of Europe. Barzani also affirmed that the renewed focus of German foreign policy on energy security was an opportunity to strengthen its partnership with the Kurdistan Region and Iraq.
“The discoveries are there in the oil fields of Kurdistan, but we must also focus on getting the oil and gas to international markets,” he added.
Barazani declared that the construction of the pipeline from Kurdistan to Turkey is on the right track, and with the right export infrastructure in place, by 2019, over three million barrels per day could be flowing through Iraq’s northern energy corridor to international markets.
This step will result in a large increase in revenues for Iraq as a whole. In addition, the resulting economic growth would contribute to the stability and unity of Iraq.
Observers believe that this initiative, if successful, will constitute a strategic and radical step toward economic independence from Baghdad, which currently has the upper hand on oil exports. The Kurdistan Region has somewhat initiated independence from Iraq through establishing its own relationships with neighboring and foreign countries.
The oil problem between Erbil and Baghdad flared up when the former signed oil contracts with foreign companies. Baghdad maintains that the region has no right whatsoever to close deals with international companies, as oil contracts are limited to the federal government.
The Kurdistan Region has announced that the construction of the pipeline will be completed by the end of 2014 or the beginning of 2015, and will link the oil wells directly to international markets. Years ago, a pipeline was expanded from Kirkuk to Turkey’s Port of Ceyhan.
After visiting Germany, Prime Minister Barzani headed to Turkey. Media reports note that Barazani met with his counterpart, Recep Tayyip Erdogan, and discussed bilateral political and economic ties.
The endeavors to grow the relationship between Ankara and Erbil have raised the ire of Baghdad, where it is believed that Turkey is meddling in Iraq’s internal affairs.
In 2012, Iraq turned back the plane carrying Turkish Minister of Energy Taner Yildiz to an energy conference in Erbil.
Barzani’s last visit to Turkey was in November 2012, following an official invitation from the Atlantic Council to take part in the fourth Energy and Economics Summit in Istanbul.
The energy reserves of the Iraqi Kurdistan Region amount to 45 billion barrels of crude and more than three trillion cubic meters of natural gas, making the region appealing to the biggest energy-consuming countries.
According to a statement issued at the end of February, the British-Turkish company Genel Energy would be exporting oil from its oil fields in Kurdistan through the pipeline that is currently under construction by 2014.
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).
By: Mustafa al-Kadhimi for Al-Monitor Iraq Pulse. Posted on March 27
Some in Baghdad are asking whether the decision to postpone elections in the provinces of Anbar and Nineveh will be reversed, following pressure from both internal and international powers, notably the United Nations and the United States. US Secretary of State John Kerry explicitly expressed his country’s objection to this decision.
Questions have been raised in Baghdad over the decision to postpone Anbar's provincial elections, and the decision may be reversed, writes Mustafa al-Kadhimi.
Will the Anbar Elections Go Ahead?
Author: Mustafa al-Kadhimi
Translated by: Steffi Chakti
Categories :Originals Iraq
The decision to postpone elections in the two provinces — both of which have seen anti-government protests over the past three months — was explained in a brief statement that stressed two important factors. The first concerned the security situation in Anbar and Mosul, and the second involved the fear that elections would open the door for “terrorists” to assume the seat of power.
The internal response to these justifications came from the protesters themselves and from some conspicuous Shiite powers, such as the Sadrist movement and Ammar Hakim’s movement. On the international level, responses came from Kerry and from Martin Kobler, the U.N. secretary-general's representative in Iraq. The reply relies on two arguments.
The first stresses that the security situation in Anbar and Nineveh reached a peak when the Constituent Assembly elections took place in 2005, and when the constitution was passed in a referendum. A similarly disturbing situation didn't hinder provincial elections in 2009, or the parliamentary elections of 2010.
Moreover, the unprecedented turbulence in Baghdad's security situation is far worse than what has been witnessed in Anbar and Mosul. During the course of one week, 40 car bombs exploded and caused thousands of casualties in Baghdad. Anbar and Mosul didn't see similarly fervent violent acts.
The second argument addresses the fear of “terrorists” seizing power. The logical question in that concern is: how were these terrorists allowed, in the first place, to present their candidates? Since laws require that candidates present their candidacy to the High Electoral Commission for ratification, does that mean that the government is meddling in the course of elections?
Neither political elites nor Shiite cleric Ali al-Sistani, who is well known for his unflappable conservative stance, were convinced by the explanations for postponing the elections. Shiite leader Muqtada al-Sadr affirmed that the postponement was carried out for political reasons, not because of security concerns.
Several days ago, protesters in Anbar formed a committee to negotiate on their behalf. The committee is led by Ahmad Bou Risha, the leader of the Sahwa movement, Ali Hatem, chieftain of the Dulaim tribes, and Ahmad al-Alwani, a member of parliament from the Iraqi List party. This initiative was warmly welcomed by Prime Minister Nouri al-Maliki, who considered it to be a positive leap forward.
Regardless of the results of negotiations with the government, reversing the decision to postpone elections in Anbar and Nineveh will serve as a solid ground on which the foundation of these negotiations can be laid.
Objections to the postponement decision weren't raised only by Sunni political powers brokering the protests. Prominent religious figure Abdul Malak al-Saadi also issued a statement voicing strong opposition to postponing the elections and saying that the decision oppresses the rights of protesters. The government does not wish to promote and deepen this impression among Sunni citizens.
Kerry’s last visit to Iraq and his explicit statement regarding postponement, and the fact that Washington isn't convinced with the arguments for postponement, will also encourage Baghdad to reverse the decision. Kerry emphasized that this issue — along with Baghdad’s stance regarding the Syrian crisis and accusations that it has facilitated Iran’s support to the Syrian region through allowing Iranian flights to use Iraqi airspace — will constitute a future problem between Washington and Baghdad.
The provincial elections are scheduled to be held on April 20, and the decision to postpone may be canceled at the last minute. If Baghdad takes notice of the wide-ranging opposition to postponing elections and cancels this decision, it could serve as a gateway to opening the doors for wider dialogue with Sunni cities and placating their concerns.
Mustafa al-Kadhimi is an Iraqi writer specializing in defense of democracy.
For the First Time, the Iraqi Parliament Publishes the Full List of Absent Deputies
by Reidar Visser
The presidency of the Iraqi parliament has taken the unprecedented step of publishing the full list of deputies who were absent from the last parliament meeting.
The move comes after a week of trouble with achieving quorum in the Iraqi national assembly. Previously, despite the fact that parliament is mostly only two-thirds full, only names of those who have formally applied for leave of absence have published. This time, the presidency of the parliament has decided to extend the parliament term with one month in response to the quorum problems, and has vowed to continue to publish the names of the absent MPs on the parliament website.
It is interesting that the list specifically describe the absence of all the deputies of the Kurdish bloc and its allies – altogether 59 deputies, including 2 Chaldeans and 1 Shabak – as relating to a “political bloc”. For the remainder of absent deputies, there are ostensibly other reasons, although a glance at the statistics reveals some interesting tendencies. Starting with the Shiite alliance, out of its 28 absent deputies, no less than 10 are Sadrists, which could perhaps be seen as something of a political protest. But note that the State of Law bloc of Prime Minister Nuri al-Maliki has also 10 deputies absent! Turning to Iraqiyya, again the Wifaq bloc of Ayyad Allawi stands out, accounting for 8 of the 23 absent MPs. But other blocs including more pro-Maliki ones are also absent, with for example 3 from the Mutlak bloc and 2 from the Karbuli bloc. Also noteworthy is the absence of 6 deputies from pro-Maliki Iraqiyya splinter groups like Free Iraqiyya (4), White (1) and Wataniyun (1).
In sums, this latest move seems like a much-needed escalation from the parliament presidency against MPs whose general laziness seems to cut across party lines. Whereas some Maliki opponents may be absent in protest, pro-Maliki MPs could be expected to be absent in sheer apathy over a parliament which often seems confined to irrelevance. Note also that the list, despite being the most comprehensive overview published to date of the absentees at any Iraqi parliamentary meeting, does not count more than 116, less than the 163 needed to deny quorum. Are we supposed to believe that Ayyad Allawi, who is not mentioned in the list, actually attended?
While the publication of this list is a welcome and long overdue move by the Iraqi parliament presidency, it seems there is still much left to do before there is full transparency in the Iraqi parliamentary process.
Reidar Visser | Friday, 29 March 2013 6:57 at 06:57 | Categories: Uncategorized | URL: http://wp.me/pBkdV-XB
OIL OWNERSHIP, CONTROL AND POLICY UNDER THE IRAQI CONSTITUTION : POLITICAL NIGHTMARE, CONSTITUTIONAL QUAGMIRE, AND LAWYER'S DREAM
The following articles appear to provide and control under the Constitution of Iraq ( EMPHASIS added by author ) ;
Oil and gas are the ownership of all the people of Iraq in all the regions and governorates.
First: The federal government WITH the PRODUCING governorates and regional governments shall undertake the MANAGEMENT of oil and gas extracted from CURRENT fields PROVIDED that it distributes oil and gas revenues in a fair manner in proportion to the population distribution in all parts of the country with a set allotment for a set time for the damaged regions that were unjustly deprived by the former regime and the regions that were damaged later on, and IN A WAY that assures balanced development in different areas of the country, and this will be REGULATED BY LAW.
Second: The federal government WITH the producing regional and governorate governments shall together formulate the necessary strategic policies to develop the oil and gas wealth IN A WAY that achieves the highest benefit to the Iraqi people using the most advanced techniques of the market principles and encourages investment.
(Antiquities and antiquity sites, traditional constructions, manuscripts and coins are considered part of the national wealth which are the responsibility of the federal authorities. They will be administered in cooperation with the regions and governorates, and this will be regulated by law )
*** It does not take a lawyer to recognize that the language of the constitution is ripe for uncertainty, conflict and controversy. Small wonder that both the Kurdish Regional Government and Baghdad ( the federal government ) can confidently claim that the actions of the other are unconstitutional and that their respective action is constitutional. ***
The foregoing makes the independence of the judiciary all the more important as it is the authority under the constitution with jurisdiction to resolve such controversies. ***
To wit :
The Federal Supreme Court shall have jurisdiction over the following:
First: Oversight of the constitutionality of laws and regulations in effect.
Second: Interpretation of the provisions of the constitution.
Third: Settle matters that arise from the application of the federal laws, decisions, regulations, instructions, and procedures issued by the federal authority. The law shall guarantee the right of each of the Cabinet, the concerned individuals and others of direct contest with the Court.
Fourth: Settle disputes that arise between the federal government and the governments of the regions and governorates, municipalities, and local administrations.
Fifth: Settle disputes that arise between the governments of the regions and governments of the governorates.
Sixth: Settle accusations directed against the President, the Prime Minister and the Ministers. That shall be regulated by law.
Seventh: Ratify the final results of the general elections for membership in the Council of Representatives.
A. Settle competency dispute between the Federal Judiciary and the judicial institutions of the regions and governorates that are not organized in a region.
B. Settle competency dispute between judicial institutions of the regions or governorates that are not organized in a region.
Decisions of the Federal Supreme Court are final and binding for all authorities.
Saadi expects settling demonstrations crisis in Iraq
Friday, 29 March 2013 09:40 | | |
Baghdad (AIN) –MP, Kamal al-Saadi, of the State of Law Coalition expected settling the demonstrations crisis in Iraq.
He stated to All Iraq News Agency (AIN) “There are indicators to settle the demonstrations crisis where the dialogue is the only adopted means between the demonstrations and the government.”
“Some of the ministers and the political blocs resume their participation in the government and we expect the others to resume their participation next week where it will help in settling the crisis,” he added.
“Unfortunately, the parliament is still witnessing the crisis where some sides attempt to hinder the parliament performance and the political process,” he concluded.
Earlier, the demonstrators in Anbar province announced, on last Thursday, forming a negotiating delegation to negotiate with the government to respond their demands.
Kurds get benefit from political disputes in Iraq, says Timimi
Friday, 29 March 2013 10:35 | | |
Baghdad (AIN) –MP, Mansour al-Timimi, of the State of Law Coalition stated that the Kurds got many benefits from the political disputes in Iraq.
Speaking to All Iraq News Agency (AIN) “The Kurdish stance regarding their withdrawal from the government and the parliament is unjustified,” noting that “The Kurdish MPs represent the Iraqis and they must defend the rights of all the Iraqis.”
“The Kurds are the only beneficiary side from the General Budget, whereas Basra province forms about 90% of the Budget and gets only 1%,” he added.
“We, as the MPs from Basra province, had to withdraw from the government and the parliament, but to preserve the national unity we did not do that because we represent all Iraq not only Basra,” he concluded.