Erbil-Baghdad Relations Still Lack Substance

A clever and influential politician like Barzani does not see things from the same perspective as the governmental delegations. He deals with agreements as commitments and holds onto agreed-upon norms that he believes should not undergo new negotiations.

Usually, after the return of the governmental delegations to Baghdad, they are left with the impression that Barzani is very strict regarding the issues of the conflict. However, Barzani claims that he is not strict, but that he merely abides by existing and applicable agreements, including the Erbil Agreement, which gave rise to the current government in 2010.

The governmental negotiators do not understand that Barzani is a man who takes politics very seriously and responsibly. He only makes compromises when dealing with accepted and agreed-upon grounds. However, political norms are not subject to compromises when dealing with written agreements that, for the past several years, have constituted frameworks for the ruling of Iraq.

Of course, nothing is sacred when it comes to politics or agreements. Yet mutual trust between the parties encourages the discussion and negotiation of ideas — something that Barzani still has not felt with his negotiators today.

The Iraqi government that is led by active Shiite parties must constantly change its perspectives regarding the crises. Thus, it must alter the dialogue mechanisms with other parties. After all, clinging to one point of view without exploring the essence of previous agreements and searching for implementation methods in new agreements will not lead to tangible results.

Mustafa al-Kadhimi is an Iraqi writer specializing in defense of democracy. He has extensive experience in documenting testimony and archiving documentaries associated with repressive practices and has written many books, including Humanitarian Concerns, which was selected in 2000 by the European Union as the best book written by a refugee.

One Response to Erbil-Baghdad Relations Still Lack Substance

  1. Lorenzo 13th April 2013 at 19:25 #

    Only by talking "dugri", they can achieve peace.