Ayad Allawi, leader of the Iraqi National Alliance faction in the Iraqi parliament, speaks to reporters following a meeting with Ammar al-Hakim, leader the Islamic Supreme Council of Iraq. Photo: Rudaw video
ERBIL, Kurdistan Region - President of the Iraqi National Coalition Ayad Allawi is warning Kurds “not to ponder separation” from Iraq and for this purpose he is going to visit Erbil to discuss an independence referendum the Kurdish government said it would hold on September 25.
Following a meeting with Ammar al-Hakim, head of the ruling Shiite National Alliance, Allawi, who served as Iraqi vice president and prime minister from 2004 to 2005 said in a press conference “We see it is not the right time for this question [referendum]. It would better to be held at another time when the situation would get calmer."
Allawi added that he is waiting to see the stance from the Iraqi parliament and government on the question.
“They have not said anything as of yet. We want to understand how it is going to be,” Allawi commented.
But Baghdad already made clear that they do not agree with what they call a “unilateral” step by Erbil without asking the rest of the country over the future of Iraq.
“Any decision that concerns the future of Iraq must take into consideration the constitutional texts as it is an Iraqi decision," Saad al-Hadithi spokesperson of the Iraqi prime minister was quoted by state TV as saying.
President Barzani held a meeting with political parties in the Kurdistan Region on Wednesday where it was announced the Kurdistan Region would hold a referendum on September 25 that would also include "the Kurdistani areas outside the region's administration,”
The former Iraqi vice president said he would lead a high-ranking delegation to Erbil to discuss the mechanism of the coming process.
“We have decided a delegation with myself, would visit Erbil to know what is the referendum and what will happen after it is held. We will meet with the Kurdish leaders and before all, our brother Masoud Barzani.”
And in interview with Rudaw, Fuad Hussein, the chief of staff to the Kurdish presidency confirmed to Rudaw that the ruling Shiite National Alliance committee would consist of seven persons to discuss “future relations between Erbil and Baghdad.”
The Iraqi politician said he has warned for a long time that they do not have to do something that makes the “Kurds ponder separation from Iraq. We have to work along with them as part of Iraq.”