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Nechirvan Barzani elected Kurdistan Region president

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Nechirvan Barzani elected Kurdistan Region president

PostAuthor: Anthea » Wed May 29, 2019 10:57 pm

Nechirvan Barzani elected
Kurdistan Region president

Eighty-one MPs were present in the Region’s 111-seat parliament to cast their vote in Tuesday’s session. Nechirvan, the Kurdistan Democratic Party (KDP) candidate, secured 68 votes :ymapplause:

His four rivals secured zero votes.

Nechirvan, nephew of former president Masoud Barzani, will step down as prime minister to assume the role.

In mid-June, the president-elect is expected to ask his cousin, Masrour Barzani, to form the new cabinet.

The Patriotic Union of Kurdistan (PUK), which holds 21 seats in the legislature against the KDP's 45, issued a statement ahead of the session saying the KDP has not adhered to their prior agreements. They would therefore not participate in the vote.

“We haven’t seen the smallest step from our KDP brothers. We haven’t seen even good intent towards one section of both our agreements from our KDP brothers,” PUK spokesperson Latif Shiekh Omer told reporters in Sulaimani ahead of the vote on Tuesday.

“Unilateralism in Kurdistan will not succeed, and it shouldn’t succeed, and it should be prevented,” Omer added.

KDP spokesperson Mahmud Mohammed expressed regret over the PUK not participating in the session.

“Unfortunately, PUK friends reneged on the agreements and didn’t take part in the parliament meeting to elect a president for the Region without taking into account the sensitive situation of the Region, ignoring the expectations of the people of Kurdistan and the will of the nation,” he wrote on his Facebook page on Tuesday.

This is while “we need a strong government and unity in Kurdistan,” Mohammed implored.

“In light of the PUK reneging on the agreements and its efforts to waste time in the past several months, one can unfortunately suspect that they had right from the beginning aimed the political process to be delayed, paralyzed and not reach a result,” he added.

Kirkuk and the KDP’s failure to agree to the appointment of a PUK governor to the disputed province remains a key stumbling block.

This didn’t stop the PUK’s Qubad Talabani, the Region’s deputy prime minister, congratulating Nechirvan on his election.

“I am proud to have worked alongside him for five difficult years. I am confident that his competence and vision will guarantee success in this challenging responsibility, part of which would include putting the Kurdish house in order,” he tweeted.

New Generation, meanwhile, boycotted the whole process, arguing the presidency law does not serve democracy or the parliamentary system.

Omed Khoshnaw, head of the KDP parliamentary bloc, told a press conference immediately following the vote that the PUK boycott would have “negative consequences”.

“The process will not stop. We elected the president and we will form the government,” he said.

Later in the day, officials and diplomats wished Barzani well in his future role.

Who is Nechirvan Idris Mustafa Barzani?

    - Born on September 21, 1966 in Haji Omaran
    - Displaced to Iran along with his family in 1975
    - Student of political science at Tehran University
    - Elected member of the Kurdistan Democratic Party (KDP) politburo in 1989
    - Elected deputy prime minister of the Kurdistan Regional Government (KRG) in 1996
    - Elected prime minister of the KRG’s fourth cabinet in 1999
    - Elected prime minister of the KRG in 2006 (unified cabinet)
    - Elected prime minister of the KRG from 2011 to 2013
    - Elected prime minister of the KRG from 2013 to 2018
    - Elected deputy president of the KDP during the party’s 13th congress
    - Nominated by KDP for the presidency on December 3, 2018
    - Married father of five
The president-elect's reaction

Barzani issued a statement following his election thanking the parliament for placing confidence in him as president:

“I reassure the beloved people of Kurdistan that the Presidency of the Region will be an umbrella for unity, bringing together all the political parties of Kurdistan and its various ethnic and religious communities for the sake of a peaceful coexistence of the Kurdistani nation,” Barzani said.

With issues still unresolved between Baghdad such as the disputed areas, oil, and Peshmerga-Iraqi forces cooperation, the president-elect said the Iraqi constitution will guide his work.

“Social peace, guaranteeing social and individual rights, will be our main aim, through resolving all the problems between the Region and the federal government by dialogue within the framework of the constitution,” he added.

Barzani wants to continue in his endeavors to strengthen Erbil’s ties regionally and internationally.

Our main objective will also be to “protect friendly and strong relations with neighboring countries and the region, and continuing to strengthen the position and weight of the Kurdistan Region in the region and globally,” he said.

Although predominately home to ethnic Kurds who are Sunni Muslim, the Kurdistan Region is one of the most diverse areas of the Middle East home to Arabs, Turkmen, Yezidis, Christians, and other ethno-religious groups.

“The Kurdistan Region is home to all the different communities of Kurdistan. And the Presidency of the Region will strive to respond to their will and rights without any discrimination,” Barzani said.
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Nechirvan Barzani elected Kurdistan Region president



Re: Nechirvan Barzani elected Kurdistan Region president

PostAuthor: Anthea » Tue Jun 11, 2019 1:51 am

Kurdistan Region swears in Nechirvan Barzani as new president

Nechirvan Barzani thanked his predecessor, Masoud Barzani, for his leadership of the Kurdish nation since he was 16 years old. Nechirvan Barzani will now be the official commander-in-chief of all the Kurdistan Region's security forces. He will also be the de facto head of state

“In future stages, we will make every effort to organize, strengthen Peshmerga forces as a part of Iraqi defense system," he said.

Kurdistan Regional Government (KRG) relations with Baghdad deteriorated after the events of October 2017, but have improved particularly since Prime Minister Adil Abdul-Mahdi came to power last year. But to continue improving, Barzani underscored, relations and work across local parties need to be more coordinated.

    I’m honored to continue to serve the people of the Kurdistan Region & thank all those who attended my inauguration as President of the Kurdistan Region. I have taken an oath to protect the unity, rights & interests of the people of Kurdistan & will do so to the best of my ability
    — Nechirvan Barzani (@IKRPresident) June 10, 2019
"In the political culture and media convention in the Kurdistan Region, we often stress on our rivalries and disagreements more than necessary. Let’s have harmony with each other from now on..." however Barzani said, “It is okay for rivalries and differences of opinion to remain."

Barzani spoke of a "new joint roadmap" for relations between Baghdad and Erbil.

“We had hope in the constitution, but it was unfortunately not implemented as it is to build the new Iraq all Iraqi nations dreamt of," he said.

The salaries and pensions of civil servants, pensions, budgets, and the Kurdistan Region's independent oil of exports have been impediments for previous governments.

“We should work together with the federal government in Baghdad to find shared solutions within the framework of the constitution of federal Iraq," he said.

The issue of the implementation of Article 140 for the disputed areas like Kirkuk and Shingal has been exasperated as Islamic State (ISIS) extremists remain active in security vacuums between Iraqi and Peshmerga forces.

“Through mutual understanding and joint work, we can once again revive our constitution, respect and implement it without discrimination so that ISIS is not created again, and the disasters that happened in Shingal, Iraq and the Kurdistan Region do not repeat," he said, referring to the genocide of the Yezidis and others in Kurdistan's history.

Let’s together “take constructive steps to agree on a joint roadmap for the country and governance without discriminating between nations, religions, sects and areas," he implored.

The political apparatus in the Kurdistan Region is often critiqued for being slow to respond to challenges.

“Swift changes in the Region need a shared vision," he said.

Nechirvan Barzani recalled the presidential system stems from calls during the Koya uprisings.

He also emphasized that the world owes the Peshmerga and the US-led international anti-ISIS coalition and Iraqi forces a debt of gratitude for their sacrifices.

Following his speech, the speaker of the Kurdistan Region parliament Vala Farid said this session at parliament would continue at 11 a.m. on Tuesday. The Kurdistan Democratic Party has nominated Masrour Barzani as its candidate for the premiership. He currently serves as the head of the Kurdistan Region Security Council (KRSC).

"We all share one future just was we are all under one sun in the sky," the new president concluded.

“I congratulate Mr. Nechirvan Barzani for his new position. I would like to take the opportunity to reiterate the values of co-existence and peace between all the ethnicities, religions and sects of Iraq,” Abadi tweeted after Barzani's inaguration.

He also insisted that Iraqi nationalism should be bolstered under Nechirvan Barzani’s term.

“I also stress … the necessity of making use of [his new responsibilities] to bolster Iraq's unity, sovereignty, and a fair distribution of its wealth. Iraq is for Iraqis, and they have the duty to be loyal to it,” Abadi said.

Abadi ordered the deadly federal takeover of all disputed areas in October 2017 by federal forces which had previously been under Peshmerga control. Relations with Baghdad have improved with his successor Adil Abdul-Mahdi.

Hamid al-Ghezi, the secretary-general of the Iraqi Council of Ministers who attended the ceremony as envoy for Prime Minister Adil Abdul-Mahdi, said since the invasion of Iraq in 2003, Baghdad has developed democracy and built a “constitutional relationship” with Erbil based on the unity of Iraq and protection of its sovereignty.

“This relationship has been demonstrated by overcoming issues and keeping unity in the face of security challenges – something that puts us before a path which connects us through deepening coordination between Baghdad and Erbil and stepping towards a new stage of construction and reconstruction,” he said.

Iraqi National Security Advisor Falih Alfayyadh repeatedly congratulated Nechirvan Barzani, reminding him that the Barzani family is full of leaders.

He emphasized that the people of Iraq, including the Kurdistan Region, are looking to leaders for unity to serve them.

Alfayyadh vowed to do all he could in Baghdad that cooperates with the KRG. He wished prosperity and success for the Kurdistan Region moving forward.

He added that the liberated cities await for reconstruction and return to life, as do internally displaced Iraqis.

Ammar al-Hakim emphasized the historical struggle and leadership that the Barzani family had during the previous regime.

He acknowledged the sacrifices that Kurds have given for the sake of Iraq, arguing that the relationship between the governments in Erbil and Baghdad are larger than any personalities or political parties.

“Kurdistan-Iraq relations are greater than governments or individuals as governments change and individuals leave positions but the nation and people remain. The history and civilization of the Kurdistan Region of Iraq, typically Erbil, was and will stay as the station of pride for all Iraqis.”

He said they have “always stressed the need to benefit from the experience of Kurdistan and apply it to the rest of the provinces of our beloved Iraq in middle, south, and west.”

Barzani “is known for his sobriety and acumen, his keenness for unity and solidarity, and the connection between all Iraqis,” Hakim added.

Hakim said prosperity can be achieved in the Kurdistan Region if the Iraqi parliament and the Kurdistan Region works together, similarly to that in southern Iraq. He also emphasized the importance of the real Iraqi image and its diversity.

Ammar al-Hakim is an influential Shiite cleric and leader of the Hikma (Wisdom Movement). He called Nechirvan Barzani his brother a well-known smart person throughout Iraqi cities.

He blamed the rise of the Islamic State (ISIS) on political disputes and the lack of unity between leaders.

Speaker of the Iraqi Parliament Mohammed al-Halbousi encouraged all the components of Iraq to embrace democracy and form.

He congratulated Nechirvan Barzani on becoming president of the Kurdistan Region and said he looked forward to both working together to zeroing all problems.

Calling, Kurds his "brothers," Halbousi was optimistic.

Halbousi said the election of Nechirvan Barzani as president is “an important step toward the strengthening of political process and a living example of respect for the constitution and the will of the people.”

It also shows the “role of the second generation in the political process who have gained a significant amount of experience throughout their work with leaders from the first generation in the political process.”

Salih encourages practical steps between Erbil, Baghdad

Iraqi President Barham Salih, a Kurd from Sulaimani, acknowledged the positive accomplishments which can be achieved when Baghdad and Erbil cooperate like they did through the conflict with the Islamic State (ISIS).

Salih said he expects KDP President Masoud Barzani to continue to have a leadership voice as he has for the past 50 years.

"Mr. Masoud’s [Barzani] role and effect will continue in the next phase," he said, perhaps marking a more cordial tone in the future of PUK-KDP relations.

He emphasized the need for an agenda and practical steps to be taken between the KRG and Iraqi government.

"The success of the Kurdistan Region is strength for Baghdad and Basra. It is support for the safety and security of the entire Iraq. In the same way, the strength of Iraq and Basra, security in Mosul is support for the Kurdistan Region," the Iraqi president added.

Masoud Barzani congratulates new president

Former Kurdistan Region President Masoud Barzani was the first to congratulate Nechirvan Barzani on his new post as president.

Masoud Barzani called on the Kurdistan Regional Government (KRG) and Iraqi federal government in Baghdad to take steps to resolve outstanding problems especially in the disputed territories like Kirkuk.

"I call on the KRG and federal government to try together to resolves outstanding problems as soon as possible, especially problems in disputed territories," he said.

Masoud Barzani also encouraged political parties in the Kurdistan Region to resolve internal problems.

"I call on political parties in the Region to responsibly and with a fraternal spirit to resolve internal problems," said the leader of the KDP.

He noted that ISIS remains a threat in Iraq.

"Steps for forming the KRG will begin from tomorrow on," Barzani said.

Barzani takes presidential oath

Nechirvan Idris Barzani was sworn in around 12:30 p.m. as the new president of the Iraqi Kurdistan Region after formalities by parliament's leadership.

Iraqi Kurdistan Region President-Elect Nechirvan Barzani, Iraqi President Barham Salih, KDP President Masoud Barzani, Iraqi Parliament Speaker Mohammed al-Halbousi, and acting PUK leader Kosrat Rasul attend the presidential swearing-in ceremony in Erbil, Kurdistan Region, on June 10, 2019.

ERBIL, Kurdistan Region — Foreign and local dignitaries have gathered in Erbil on Sunday to attend the swearing-in ceremony of Nechirvan Barzani as president of the Kurdistan Region.

Diplomats from the foreign ministries of neighboring Turkey like Minister Mevlut Cavusoglu and Iran are attending among representatives from embassies, consulates, and other missions. Speaker of the Iraqi Parliament Mohammed al-Halbousi is also attending to represent the federal government in Baghdad.

Nechirvan Barzani has served as Kurdistan Regional Government (KRG) prime minister in the current government. It held elections in September 2018, but government formation has been slow due to partisanship and disagreements over posts.

The office of the presidency was suspended in November 2017, when Masoud Barzani, Nechirvan’s uncle, stepped down as president. Masoud Barzani is head of the Kurdistan Democratic Party (KDP) — the largest in the Kurdistan Region.

The KDP has nominated Masrour Barzani, the head of the Kurdistan Region Security Council (KRSC), to be the next prime minister. His nomination must first pass parliament.

Iraqi President Barham Salih, a politburo member of the Patriotic Union of Kurdistan (PUK), is also attending. The PUK is the second-largest in the Kurdistan Region.

Since the establishment of the new Iraq from 2003-2005, the KDP has held the post of the Kurdistan Region presidency, while the PUK has taken the Iraqi presidency.

Nechirvan Barzani secured 68 votes of the 81 MPs present in the parliamentary session on May 28, despite the PUK bloc boycotting the session. However, the PUK announced on Sunday that they would attend the swearing-in ceremony.

The president of the Kurdistan Region wields tremendous power, serving as the de facto head of state and commander-in-chief of all security forces.
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