Fuad Hussein, the chief of staff to the Kurdish presidency, meets with US President Donald J. Trump at the White House on March 21. Photo: KRG-US
ERBIL, Kurdistan Region - The Kurds have the right to self-determination as a right endorsed by the United Nations and as a people who have their land, language, culture, history and identity, says Chief of Staff of the Kurdish president Fuad Hussein, and that’s why President Masoud Barzani has suggested September 25 as the day of referendum.
All Kurdish rights have been trampled historically and their demand for freedom and democracy answered with iron and fire, argued Hussein, and they have been subjected to genocide and deportation.
The chief of staff quoted Barzani as saying that the Kurds gave Iraq a chance for democracy, pluralism, a constitution that would guarantee all people’s rights, and a voluntary union after the liberation of Iraq in 2003.
Yet years later Iraq is still violating the constitution and the most important pillars of federalism, which is revenue-sharing and border demarcation, are being ignored. In addition to that Kurdistan Region’s budget has been frozen and Article 140 not implemented.
Hussein cited the preface of the Iraqi constitution that says abiding by the charter will protect Iraq’s sovereignty and territorial integrity, and its violation would lead to disintegration.
Hussein said that Barzani’s decree stipulates that due to years of the violation of the constitution and the rights of the people of Kurdistan, political parties decided to confer with people in order to decide their own future by themselves.
Meetings have also taken place with the election commission about the mechanism and measures to be taken for holding the referendum in September, said Hussein.
Two seats on the commission have been reserved for Change Movement (Gorran) and Kurdistan Islamic Group (Komal), who did not attend the June 7 meeting. They have until Monday to appoint their respective representatives for seats on the commission.
Hussein says Kurds in diaspora will also be able to participate in the vote.
According to a previous statement this week from the Kurdish presidency, the elections for the presidency and parliament in the Kurdistan Region are going to take place on time on November 6.