KDP official: agreement similar to that of Shingal necessary for Kirkuk

Kirkuk – one of the offices of KDP after it was evacuated in October 2017 – photo: KirkukNow

Soran Muhammad - Kirkuk

A high-ranking member of the Kurdistan Democratic Party (KDP) revealed that his party is seeking an agreement similar to the Shingal agreement regarding Kirkuk governorate, stressing, "We will return only if the situation of Kirkuk is normalized."

Adnan Kirkuki, a member of the Kirkuk-Garmiyan Leadership Council of the KDP, said in a statement to KirkukNow: "An agreement on Kirkuk, similar to the agreement that was signed between the Iraqi government and the Kurdistan Regional Government regarding Shingal should be signed, in order to improve conditions and be step towards normalizing the city’s situation."

"That city should not be militarized so much. The city does not need such a militarized situation. We’ve said it before and we say it now: the return of the Kurdistan Democratic Party is always on the table."

The KDP official’s statement comes at a time the time Iraqi Prime Minister Mustafa Al-Kadhimi asked the Kirkuk administration to hand over to the KDP the buildings that had been the party was using in Kirkuk before October 2017, including the one used as headquarters of the leadership council of the party, which now used as a base for the Joint Operations Command in Kirkuk.

“The rumours on social media or some websites that talk of KDP’s return to Kirkuk are false. There isn’t any determined date for KDP’s return. We reiterate what we have said before: the return of KDP to Kirkuk is tied to normalizing the situation. Whenever conditions in the city are normalized, we will return as a political party.”

Kirkuk, 15 October – Arab residents protest against handing over KDP’s former headquarters – photo: KirkukNow

Adnan Kirkuki insists that for normalizing conditions in Kirkuk, “an agreement similar to that of Shingal is necessary.”

The Shingal agreement was signed on 1 October between the Federal Government and the Kurdistan Regional Government, to form a new administration and to reorganize the security oversight for the district.

The Federal Police, Intelligence Agency and National Security Apparatus with cooperation with Kurdistan Regional Government Security Forces, will be put in charge of the security of the district.

The issue of KDP’s return to Kirkuk and handover of the bases has caused parts of the Arab and Turkmen population of the province to protest. On 15 November, they asked the prime minister to overturn his decision on giving the buildings back to KDP.

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