“We have met with many EU officials and discussed the current situation in the Kurdistan Region and Iraq as well as the collective punitive measures and embargoes imposed on the region by the Federal Government of Iraq,” Delavar Ajgeiy, the KRG representative to the EU, told Kurdistan 24.
Ajgeiy explained that they have requested the EU bring Baghdad to the negotiation table so that the Iraqi government will respect all the articles of the Iraqi constitution, stop international flight bans on Kurdistan, send the budget share of the Kurdistan Region without any decrease, and withdraw the Iranian-backed Shia Hashd al-Shaabi militias in the areas they “occupied” following the Oct.
Ties between Erbil and Baghdad have considerably deteriorated following the Sep.
25 referendum on independence for the Kurdistan Region.
EU Foreign Ministers have scheduled to meet on Dec.
11 to “discuss the situation in Iraq to guide the preparations of the new EU strategy for engagement with Iraq.
The High Representative and the Commission are expected to present the new strategy in January.”
The KRG called for the international community to play an active role in preparing the ground for talks between Erbil and Baghdad and has called for a third party to become a mediator in the dialogue.
The EU provides millions of euros in humanitarian aid to Iraq, and Ajgeiy believes that the EU can use its assistance support as a leverage to push Baghdad to step up in launching a dialogue with Erbil.
Iraq’s Planning Minister Salman Jumaili on Wednesday signed two agreements with the EU to begin reconstruction of areas liberated from the Islamic State (IS).
The two agreements, signed by Jumaili and EU Ambassador to Iraq Ramon Blecua, will provide 60.4 million euros “to restore stability” in the areas liberated from IS, Italy’s Nova Agency reported.
Both Erbil and Baghdad agree that their differences can be resolved through dialogue, but so far no talks have taken place between them.
Editing by C.
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