Iraqiya MP: we have not taken a decision to suspend our membership in Parliament or Cabinet. 24/12/2012 08:49:00
BAGHDAD / NINA / MP, of the Iraqiya coalition, Hamid Kassar al-Zobaie said "the MPs of the Iraqiya coalition, will attend the meeting of the Council of Representatives today," noting that Iraqiya has not taken a decision to suspend its membership in the Parliament and the cabinet. "
He said in a statement to the National Iraqi News Agency / NINA / "most of the Iraqiya coalition MPs were present at the session of the House of Representatives yesterday, but other blocs MPs did not attend the meeting, thus we did not get a quorum to hold the meeting."
Al-Zobaie accused Prime Minister Nuri al-Maliki of shirking from agreements and promises he had given to others, wishing that Maliki implement the promise he made on the issue of the protection team of al-Issawi, so as not to add a new problem and another political crisis in the political arena. "
Parliament: voting on 8 laws today
24/12/2012 08: 11
He said the decision of the House of Mohammed al-Khalidi in a press statement: "the Presidency of the Council of Deputies decided to postpone the second Council meeting of the second legislative term of the third year tomorrow (today) Monday for lack of a quorum.
According to representative early source for» features & Centre for the Iraqi media network», «the agenda of today's meeting Monday with the voting on the draft law of the first amendment to the law of roads No. 35 of 2002, and vote on the proposed Act first amendment law of the Ministry of industry and minerals (38) for the year 2011, as well as voting on the proposal of the law on the prevention of hate violence import games».
It will also "vote on the draft law of the Republic of Iraq to the Statute of the Islamic States Institute for standardization and Metrology (thick), and vote on the draft law on ratification of the amendment to the Convention on the establishment of Arabic company building and repairing ships, ratified by law No. (58) Act of 1974, as well as the voting on the draft law of the Republic of Iraq to the Protocol against the illicit manufacturing of and trafficking in firearms, their parts and components and ammunition, supplementing the United Nations Convention against transnational organized crime, and vote on the Bill The accession of the Republic of Iraq to the Convention on the establishment of the International Islamic trade finance.
The meeting will also see the vote on the draft law on the Organization of agricultural land lease wetmilk the right disposition of agricultural graduates and veterinarians, and the second reading of the draft Act of the National Council of water, discuss the questionnaire for the members of Parliament on the development of the great code of conduct in Iraq, with continued discussion of the draft law of the federal public budget of the Republic of Iraq for the fiscal year 2013, as well as Minister of youth and sports.
National: federal judge to resolve differences 24/12/2012-08: 17
Called the National Alliance of State of law Coalition parliamentary block Sheikh Khalid Al-Attiya to recourse to the Federal Court to resolve the political crisis in the event of no agreement or consensus on the Constitution. ... Details http://www.microsofttranslator.com/b...Fview.17573%2F
******** MALIKI'S " ACE IN THE HOLE " ?????? ********
Iraqiya denies an Iranian role in the settlement between Maliki and Issawi. 24/12/2012 09:46:00
BAGHDAD / NINA / A leader in the Iraqiya coalition, Ahmed al-Mesari denied what some media had cited that the Iranian ambassador, Hassan Dnaiifar had a role in settling the issue of the arrest al-Issawi's bodyguards.
He told the National Iraqi News Agency / NINA /: "there was no any role to the Iranian ambassador in Baghdad, concerning the issue of the detention of Issawi's bodyguards, which led to settle this issue."
Some media indicated that there is a role for the Iranian ambassador, and that role led to the settlement between the Prime Minister and Finance Minister Rafie al-Issawi.
Urgent….Maliki arrives in Jordon Monday, 24 December 2012 10:00 | | |
Baghdad (AIN) -The Iraqi Prime Minister, Nouri al-Maliki, arrived to Jordon.
Reliable source cited "Maliki has arrived in Jordon with his accompanying delegation which comprises a number of ministers including the Ministers of Transportation, Trade as well as advisors and officials."
Maliki was received by his counterpart, Abdullah al-Nisour, in an official reception at Amman international airport.
The argument in this article is against the normative notion of democratic federalism understood as a political solution in divided states with latent ethno-sectarian conflicts. This fact has certainly been illuminated in Iraq, since the country ratified its federal constitution through a referendum on October 15, 2005. Scrutinizing this normative idea through the Iraqi federal experiment provides a critical argument against its rationalization.
The federal experiment in Iraq has already proven its weaknesses. The behavior of the Shia Arab centralists against Kurdish federalists in Baghdad may become the cause of a new expected state failure. Currently, the Kurdistan Regional Government (KRG) and the central government in Baghdad are distressed by a military escalation around the constitutionally recognized disputed areas.
Heavy deployment of troops in those areas predicts a future of separatism, sectarian violence or domination by a single interest at the central government. The conflict between these two parts is about the idea of federalism, self-rule, the issue of the disputed territories and the management of the natural recourses. However, this article, will only examine the current crisis that is considered a possible cause for a new military confrontation between the Kurds and Baghdad.
Seeing the situation through ethno-sectarian lines, the Shia Arab interests, impersonated in Prime Minister Nuri al-Maliki, have usurped the power at the central government. Besides his post as Prime Minister, Maliki is also the Minister of Defence, Minister of the Interior, Director of Intelligence and Commander in Chief of the Armed Forces. This fact provides a critical argument against the casual effect of this problem, which is the notion of democratic federalism. My opposition to this idea is based on the premise that in order for a federal system to work, democratic culture is necessary in governmental settings.
In his two terms as Prime Minister, Maliki has concentrated the most essential parts of the executive power in his own domain. His actions should be considered a warning for dictatorial behavior. These actions are against the constitutional federal principle that advocates decentralization and incorporation of the divided communities into the decision making process at the central government. This shows that the Prime Minister is not keen to administrate the democratic institutions according to constitutional federal arrangements.
The Prime Minister’s attitude implies that he is influenced by a centralist doctrine, which is more suitable for unitary states rather than federations. This in itself demonstrates Maliki’s antagonistic position against federalism in Iraq. At the same time, the KRG is not giving up any of its post-Saddam federalist accomplishments. The Kurds are considered the protagonists of federalism against the centralist doctrine. These two key entities represent two distinguished dichotomous attitudes in the Iraqi federal discourse.
The current situation between the KRG and Baghdad was triggered profoundly when Maliki mobilized a new army division, called the Tigress Operations Command (TOC), also known as Dijla Forces. Their purpose is it to control security in the disputed territories. The Kurds consider the Dijla Forces, which is under Maliki’s direct command, a major threat to their interests.
The Kurds claim this action to be against their political gains, more specifically in the oil-rich province of Kirkuk. They are uncompromising about the Dijla Forces and see it as the result of Maliki failure to solve the problem of the disputed areas through “Article 140”. This article stipulates a process of demographic normalization; a population census and a referendum to decide its future governance.
Maliki established the Dijla command unilaterally and he was not acting according to constitutional procedures. His decision was made without the consent of the Iraqi Parliament or the Council of Ministers. Maliki also neglected the appeal of the Iraqi President, Jalal Talabani, to not form this army division.
The KRG responded by deploying thousands of Peshmerga forces with tanks, heavy artillery and armoured vehicles in the outskirts of Kirkuk. Kurdistan Region President Massoud Barzani claimed in an interview with Azzaman News, published December 3, 2012, that Maliki is responsible for the escalation and that the formation of the Dijla Forces is provocative, illegal and unconstitutional. President Barzani said that Maliki does not commit to the constitution and the federal principle in Iraq.
Hikmat Halgurd, the media director for the KRG Ministry of Peshmerga told Rudaw last week that negotiations between Baghdad and Erbil had collapsed due to Baghdad’s refusal to agree on a 14-points peace plan proposed by the Kurds to resolve the military standoff. According to Halgurd, Iraqi defense ministry officials told the Kurdish delegation that Baghdad would not dissolve the Dijla command.
PM Maliki had also demanded that the Peshmerga forces withdraw to their pre-2003 borders, which means leaving the disputed territories of Kirkuk, Dyala, Nineveh and Salahadin.
Iraqi politics, in the wake of militarizing the disagreements between the federalists and centralists, offers a critical argument against the normative idea of democratic federalism, seen as a political solution for the divided states. The current constitutional settings have failed to deliver political stability or security to its citizens. It is about time that these political structures are brought into question.
Reassessing the Iraqi political system opens up the idea of confederalism, which should be more debated to solve the problem of governance. The question is; why should confederalism be considered as an option? Hypothetically, the option of democratic confederation would create further decentralization. This would minimize political interaction among equal communities according to the premise that democracy would develop better in smaller units. The central agenda in a confederation would cover economic and security agreement with their rival communities. It enables the different communities to have absolute self-rule in domestic affairs, and in return it may isolate the ethno-sectarian violence. Confederalism could raise the sense of individualism among the citizens instead of ethnic conflict and thus create a healthier environment for democracy.
Federal arrangements have failed to deliver proper governance to Iraq, and the failure of this issue requires an effective and immediate solution to the current constitutional power settings. The Iraqi federal discourse examined in this article shows that the notion of federal democracy has caused intense ethnic conflict between the Kurds and Arabs. The centralists in Baghdad, under the control of Maliki, have raised the stakes by forming the Dijla Forces and are openly opposing federalism. For their part, the Kurds opposed the militarization of the disputed territories and they responded by increasing their Peshmerga troops in those areas.
Both sides are behaving according to the principle of zero-sum-game that may result in a civil war. It is crucial that the political debate in Iraq be focused on further decentralization of the state system. Isolating the ethnic conflict through a confederate arrangement may help strengthen democracy in smaller units. We have the option of saving Iraq with its current boundaries through confederal adjustments. If not, a military confrontation between the KRG and Baghdad will be the end of Iraq and the creation of the first independent Kurdish state.
* MSs in Political Science, Stockholm University. Lecturer at University of Duhok
" The Kurds cannot thank an America that rid them of Saddam Hussein, but wants them to bow to Maliki. " The Kurds Finally Say 'No' To America
21/12/2012 05:06:00By REBWAR KARIM WALI
The Kurds helped America to put Iraq back on its feet, but they always knew that America wasn’t the best mediator when they needed it. Kurds have often fallen victim to America’s interests and sacrificed greatly to mend America’s mistakes in Iraq.
Before their presidential elections, American leaders tried to reason with both Erbil and Baghdad, but now their tone has changed and they ask the Kurds to let go of their constitutional rights and show leniency towards Prime Minister Nuri al-Maliki’s government for the sake of Iraq’s integrity.
America tried hard to bring President Massoud Barzani and Maliki to the negotiation table, but Barzani’s response to America was quite unexpected. This time their ally said “No” to them.
Officially, it is said that America speaks with Barzani and Maliki in an equal tone, but in reality, and after Barzani’s “No”, an anti-Kurdish sentiment is palpable in the American policy.
The Washington Post, a newspaper in which American policy makers often express their views, albeit anonymously, has been writing about the current crisis between the Kurds and Baghdad. But its reports aren’t appealing to the Kurds. From American leaders one could sense the same views as those of Maliki.
America itself was trying to improve relations between Turkey and the Kurdistan Region, but now it is America that is warning the Turks that if they sign their major oil deals with Erbil, they will put Iraq’s integrity at risk and an independent Kurdish state will emerge.
One the one hand Maliki is trying to mend relations with Turkey with the help of Iraq’s Sunni parties, and his only goal behind this is to undermine the Kurds. On the other hand, America tells Turkey not to go ahead with building a Kurdish-Turkish oil pipeline.
America feels that it is the strong relations between Ankara and Erbil that gives the Kurds the confidence to behave the way they do now.
But what is clear so far is that the strong relations between Erbil and Ankara will be a major factor in deciding Iraq’s future. One of the important dimensions of this relationship is that the Kurds can now say “no” to America.
The Kurds can now take a stance in the face of America. America’s consideration for the Kurds as an influential figure in the region starts from here. What existed between them in the past was nothing but flattery and appeasement.
America can no longer weld Kurdistan to a failed Iraq. The wave of change in the region and new common interests have given people a new outlook to their future. Therefore, instead of trying to deteriorate things further, America should try to adopt a kind of policy that will work with the new reality of this region.
The Kurds cannot thank an America that rid them of Saddam Hussein, but wants them to bow to Maliki.
Jumaili: Maliki apologizes to Esawi over arresting his guards Monday, 24 December 2012 10:20 | | |
Baghdad (AIN) –The head of the Iraqiya bloc, Salman l-Jumaili, stated that the Premier, Nouri al-Maliki, phoned the Finance Minister, Rafi l-Esawi, and apologized over arresting his guards.
In a press conference held at the parliament building, Jumaili said "The Iraqiya bloc does not object on arresting Esawi's guards, but it objects on the monopoly of the authority and creating crises by Maliki."
"Our absence from the parliament session on Sunday was due to the meeting of the leaders of the political blocs within the Iraqiya Slate in order to achieve a united stance over this issue," he added.
"We do appreciate the stances of the citizens of Anbar and Salah il-Din provinces over this issue," he pointed out, assuring that "In case this issue was not settled, we will have other options."