Iraqi PM favours resolving disputes with Kurds for defeating IS

Iraqi Prime Minister Haider al-Abadi Sunday called for a resolution of outstanding problems between Baghdad and the Kurdistan Regional Government (KRG), given that both sides are fighting the Islamic State (IS).

“The interest of Iraq is greater than all of us, and the threat of terrorism is a threat to all (of) Iraq, which invites us to solve all the problems,” Abadi said in a statement, following his meeting with a visiting Kurdish delegation, Xinhua reported.

“We don’t think that there is a problem which cannot be resolved in accordance with the constitution, justice and fairness,” Abadi said.

The delegation headed by Prime Minister of the semi-autonomous region of Kurdistan, Nechirvan Barzani had arrived in Baghdad to discuss the pending issues between the KRG and the Iraqi government, including the dispute on oil exports.

For his part, Barzani hailed Abadi’s attitude in dealing with the divisions among Iraqi factions.

“We have the same approach to solve the problems, and we support adopting a clear strategy for finding solutions (to the disputes) through ongoing meetings,” Barzani said.

The Iraqi government and the Kurds reached an agreement Nov 13, to ease the tensions between the governments of Iraq and Kurdistan.

Under the agreement, the regional authority started to pump 150,000 barrels a day of crude oil to the federal oil tanks in the Turkish port of Ceyhan.

The day after, the federal government transferred some $500 million to the KRG.

Baghdad has long been opposing the Kurdish region’s independent export of oil, while Kurdish leaders have sharply criticised Baghdad for suspending the annual budget payments to the region.