Sign In / Up

Add contribution as a guest

Your email will not be displayed publicly
Benefit of signing in/signing up to personalize comment

Comment as a guest

Your email will not be displayed publicly
Benefit of signing in/signing up to personalize comment


Not a member Register   Forgot Password
or connect using





PUK expected to accept resignation of Barham Salih

By Nawzad Mahmoud 19/9/2017
Barham Salih (R), with the PUK’s Hero Ibrahim Ahmed (L) and Kosrat Rasul Ali (C). Photo: Rudaw
Barham Salih (R), with the PUK’s Hero Ibrahim Ahmed (L) and Kosrat Rasul Ali (C). Photo: Rudaw
SULAIMANI, Kurdistan Region – Dr. Barham Salih, the now-former second deputy leader of the Patriotic Union of Kurdistan (PUK), has finally bid farewell to the PUK. After distancing himself from the PUK over the past three years, Salih registered his own political entity on Saturday to run in this fall’s general elections. 

He has not formed a new political party, but a new entity called the Coalition for Democracy and Justice.

“Barham Salih will not be doing what Nawshirwan Mustafa did. He will not form a party,” a member of Salih’s new political entity said.

Bakir Sidiq, a member of Salih’s coalition, explained they are trying to find new solutions to the Region’s political problems. “Corruption, the non-independence of the rule of law, political imbalance, and other problems led to the creation of this list, making us look for solutions in this way. That is why Barham wants to serve the political process in this way,” he explained.

Eight years ago, Nawshirwan Mustafa, the previous deputy leader of the PUK, declared a list for the elections. He had broken away from the PUK three years earlier. Mustafa ultimately formed a new party – Gorran. 

The PUK is now seeing a repeat with a deputy leader who has been passive in his affiliations with the party for the past three years. The conditions under which these two splintered from the PUK differ though.

“Dr. Barham doesn’t work that much on taking PUK officials with him. Unlike Gorran, he doesn’t want PUK leaders to become the face of his entity,” said a PUK official who supports Salih, speaking anonymously. The official said a number of PUK officials will be supporting Salih.

“The coalition will not break apart from the PUK history. There will be a chance for it to have shared work with the PUK whenever the PUK gets its house in order and resolves its problems,” the official explained. 

According to information from a person close to Salih, no PUK leadership member or politburo member has so far submitted a resignation letter to the party.

“PUK officials close to Barham might not necessarily support his entity,” the source added. “No PUK leader is among the names submitted to the commission to create a list, but PUK officials might join it in the coming days.”

On Sunday, one day after registering his list with the electoral body, Salih submitted his resignation letter to PUK’s first deputy leader Kosrat Rasul Ali.

His resignation is expected to be accepted.

“The PUK leadership or politburo will not meet to decide this. His request will be accepted because he has created an entity and he has willingly resigned rather than submitting this to the PUK as a pressure card,” said PUK leadership member Farid Asasar.

Salih doesn’t want his entity participating in the November 1 presidential and parliamentary elections alone. According to information that Rudaw has obtained, he has spoken to other parties. 

After PUK leader Jalal Talabani fell ill, suffering a stroke in 2012, the party’s situation remained unstable with leadership disputes. Some leaders, including Kosrat Rasul Ali and Salih, formed a new entity last year called ‘decision-making center.’ Rivalries calmed down after Rasul reached an agreement with the party-wing led by Talabani’s wife Hero Ibrahim Ahmed. They tried to make Barham Salih break his silence, but he refused to do so.  

PUK politburo spokesperson Saadi Pira spoke to Rudaw a few minutes before news of Barham Salih’s resignation broke, saying, “Dr. Barham is a prominent political figure who has had no activities within the PUK for the past two years. He should choose either the PUK or his entity, should he form an entity and the commission accept it. He will have no connection to the PUK if he forms an entity.”

Aso Ali, a former PUK leadership member, said the situation in the PUK is complex: “Declaring this entity is the declaration of the failure of the decision-making center. The PUK’s decision-making center is extremely weak nowadays. Because of the party’s conditions, everyone is trying get things done for himself.”

The PUK, already weakened by the breakaway Gorran that took more than half of its votes, is now wondering what effect Salih’s move will have on the party. It is also unknown if Salih could draw votes from Gorran’s fan base, as well as PUK’s.

Aso Ali thinks Salih’s entity will not make much difference. “Gorran didn’t achieve results because of its political mistakes, and I think this will have a weaker result,” he said.

Parliamentary and presidential elections in the Kurdistan Region are due to be held on November 1. The High Elections and Referendum Commission has begun registering candidates. The deadline has been extended to September 28.

After registering with the commission, Salih tweeted his pleasure at the approval of his entity that he said would “promote good governance & accountability.”

Bakir Sidiq, member of the Coalition for Democracy and Justice, said: “Barham will not be against the PUK or any other party like Nawshirwan. Rather, he will be trying to restore the political process to its real work through his programs.”


Azad | 19/9/2017
I would vote on Barham a thousand times before I would even consider voting for corrupt provocateurs in Gorran. Hopefully alot of Gorran voters will vote Barham. Barham, Kosrat Rasool, Najmadin Karim and others represent the original PUK ideology led by Mam Jalal, that sought union with KDP and was not afraid to put pathetic tribal differences aside for the better of Kurdistan. PUK and KDP were closer than ever in 2009. But then Nawshirwan left. Gorran was created in protest against the improved ties between PUK and KDP. Gorran and Nawshirwan instead wanted PUK to fight KDP over pathetic tribal differences and historical hatred and this has become their mission since. PUK was further weakened when Mam Jalal became ill and his stupid wife although not as bad as Gorran is still full of tribal hate. Barham, Kosrat, Najmadin represent the only part of PUK that believe in unification of kurds, unfortunately Barham coudn't get through and has finally decided to leave PUK. Hopefully he will take alot of votes from both Hero and Gorran who have only created problems ever since they got into kurdish politics.
Yassir Fekaiki | 19/9/2017
Make way for the WarLord Bafel Talabani to take over the PUK leadership
barzan | 20/9/2017
Iam not sure Barham will achieve any great progress in the political atmosphere in Kurdistan, let us see.Thanks
Kurdo | 21/9/2017
Azad go back to ISIS

Be Part of Your Rudaw!

Share your stories, photos and videos with Rudaw, and quite possibly the world.

What You Say

Anthony | 2/23/2018 2:24:40 AM
As far as the USA is concerned they have lost a huge amount of trust in the eyes of the YPG/J Syrian Kurd's due to it's very tame almost silent...
Anthony | 2/23/2018 2:46:03 AM
@FAUthman I have seen you comment on many sites and I know you are a Turkish bot!To fix your lies and hopefully folk will understand that Afrin has...
Assad in Afrin: Possible ramifications of Damascus' deployment
| yesterday at 08:15 | (8)
Beltor | 2/22/2018 12:06:35 PM
There goes more Kurdish land. I thought turkish intervention would lose kurds soil in only Afrin. Looks like everythings gone in sheik maqsood. Talk...
kurd | 2/23/2018 2:21:27 AM
hooora, Rojawa kurds got their independence, these trolls of PKK who are happy for teh arrival of syrian and irani forces in afrin, are...
Syrian-regime loyalists enter Kurdish-held areas of Aleppo city
| yesterday at 01:54 | (2)
Outsider | 2/22/2018 9:13:42 PM
There may have arrived 100, max 200 shia militias in Afrin. And they will not really assist the YPG at the front but try to defend 2 Shia dominated...
Turan | 2/23/2018 12:16:00 AM
Everyone knows that the convoy was carrying terrorists and weapons hostile to Turkey. Since when 30 busses carry civilians middle of the night? they...
YPG deployed to Afrin, leaving Aleppo for Damascus
| 18 hours ago | (5)
Muraz Adzhoev | 2/22/2018 9:13:06 PM
What does “the administration of border crossings” mean in accordance with the Constitution? What about the border security and defense matters? How...
dilan | 2/22/2018 9:43:31 PM
customs falls under KRG control, otherwise anyone can smuggle out anything out of south kurdistan and KRG gets the blame.
Initial agreement exists for federal authority at Kurdistan borders
| 16 hours ago | (2)

Elsewhere on Rudaw

UN to vote on amended draft 'demanding' ceasefire in Syria 2 hours ago |

UN to vote on amended draft 'demanding' ceasefire in Syria

'demands' a ceasefire, instead of 'decides' more
In pictures: People raise Assad, Ocalan portraits side by side 3 hours ago |

In pictures: People raise Assad, Ocalan portraits side by side

Pro-Assad forces have arrived in waves more
McGurk in or out as special envoy to the anti-ISIS coalition? 4 hours ago |

McGurk in or out as special envoy to the anti-ISIS coalition?

“Brett McGurk isn't going anywhere more
0.203 seconds