Confederalism is the solution to Iraq crises, Mohammad Haji Mahmoud tells KurdPress
The leader of the Social Democratic Party of Iraqi Kurdistan accused the ruling parties and personalities in Baghdad of non-compliance with the constitution, especially with regard to the rights of various sections of the country, called the establishment of a confederation an effective and final solution to end the country's crises.

Mohammad Haji Mahmoud confided his ideas to KurdPress during a recent visit to Iran, including relations between the Islamic Republic and the Kurdistan Region, the economic crisis in the Kurdistan Region, relations with Baghdad, and a Turkey possible operation against Shingal

In the interview, he accused the authorities and the ruling parties in Baghdad of violating the constitution and marginalizing various parts of the country, especially the rights of the Kurds, and stressed that a confederal system is the final solution to the ongoing crises in Iraq.

Relations between the Islamic Republic of Iran and the Kurdistan Region are long-standing relations for more than forty years. These relations began with the parties and continued and expanded after the formation of the Kurdistan Federal Region and the liberation of Iraq from the Ba'athist dictatorship. The Islamic Republic of Iran was the first country to recognize the federal existence of the Kurdistan Region and established consulates in Erbil and Sulaimani. Relations have always been deep and friendly; especially in the Iran-Iraq war, we were with the Iranians in the war with a common enemy. Presence in a stronghold and historical, religious and linguistic commonalities and common interests have brought us together. At present, these relations are at a high level in the fields of trade and commerce," he said about ties between the Kurdistan Region and the Iraqi central government.

About the reasons behind the economic crises in the Kurdistan Region and the tension between Erbil and Baghdad, Haji Mahmoud stated that "First of all, I must mention that before 2014, the Iraqi central government cut the budget share and the special budget for the payment of salaries to the employees of the Kurdistan Region. Baghdad has not paid the salaries of Kurdistan Region employees and its budget share since November 2013 without providing any convincing evidence. However, this action coincided with the beginning of the war with ISIS. This war lasted for three and a half years, a war in which we fought a thousand kilometers with the terrorist group ISIS, and this decisive battle would not have been possible without the military facilities and equipment and the budget, and we were not able to defend ourselves. The presence of many martyrs and wounded and the provision of weapons, equipment and medicine required funding. In such a situation, all the problems accumulated and finally we faced the crisis of the coronavirus outbreak. In such a situation, we, as well as countries whose economies relied on oil revenues, faced devastating consequences with falling oil prices and even reaching zero. Under these circumstances, the continued cut in the budget share of the Kurdistan Region and the salaries of the employees intensified the economic crisis in the Kurdistan Region."

About the reason for the disagreement between Erbil and Baghdad, and the factors the central government point out in making such a decision, the Kurdish party leader stated "Saddam's Ba'athist regime was overthrown by the United States, the global coalition and the Peshmerga forces in the Kurdistan Region. As you know, those who now rule Iraq were not present in Iraq during Saddam's rule, but they lived in other countries. After the liberation of Iraq from the Ba'athist yoke, they returned to the country, took power in Baghdad, and cut off the budget and rights of the people of the Kurdistan Region. They do not accept the Kurds at all, which means that they do not adhere to the Iraqi constitution. A law that is written for all ethnic and religious groups in the country, and all groups share in the revenues and budget, but the current rulers of Baghdad have violated the constitution and do not adhere to it. Not only do they violate the constitution in terms of the budget and salaries of the employees of the Kurdistan Region, but they also do not implement this law in terms of governance. For example, the constitution stipulates that the prime minister should be elected by the largest parliamentary coalition, but we see that the current prime minister is not affiliated with any party. He does not even have a representative in the Iraqi parliament, and this is while he has become the prime minister."

"The solution can be summarized in a few cases. The fundamental solution is that, first of all, the rights of any Iraqi, Shiite, Sunni or Turkmen, should not be violated. The Iraqi constitution must be adhered to and the rights of all people must be protected. The main point is that the implementation of a confederal system of government is the best decision and action for the current Iraq. On the other hand, in my opinion, the delegations of the Kurdistan Region should take the road to Tehran before traveling to Baghdad and reach an agreement with the Islamic Republic of Iran, and then go to the Iraqi capital," he told KurdPress about the best solution to end the current crisis in the relations between the Kurdistan Region and the central government of Iraq

Answering the question that what is his assessment of the escalation of Turkish threats against the Kurdish region as Ankara has intensified its operations in the Kurdish region, Haji Mahmoud stressed "In my opinion, Turkey and the PKK are currently at war, which they have brought to our territory and are settling their accounts on our soil. They need to take this war and conflict to their own soil in Turkey and Turkish Kurdistan and solve their problems there."

Reporter's code: 50101