Following the meeting which took place at the PUK headquarters in Sulaimani, the parties’ joint leadership issued a statement stressing “holding the referendum for independence in the administrative areas of the Kurdistan Region and [disputed] areas after the normalization of the parliament.”
The PUK-Gorran meeting came when both parties refused to take part in today’s meeting, held by Kurdistan Region President Masoud Barzani with the referendum committee, tasked with overseeing and making preparations for the vote, Rudaw reported.
The PUK along with Gorran and Komal have not yet sent a delegate to the referendum committee.
Mahmud Sangawi, a senior PUK official stated earlier today that though they support the referendum, their support remains conditioned on the reactivation of parliament.
Sangawi said that the party had decided earlier that they support the referendum, but that “before we enter the referendum committee, the parliament must be reactivated and that barriers should not be put in the way of the parliament.”
“The majority of the leadership convened yesterday and decided that anyone who attends the referendum committee without reactivating the parliament, he will represent himself and will not be the representative of the Patriotic Union of Kurdistan,” Sangawi added.
The Kurdish parliament has remained deactivated after it was closed down in October 2015 in the wake of the deterioration of the KDP and Gorran relations, mainly over the question of the Kurdistan president post, leading to the sacking of Gorran ministers in the government in Erbil and barring the speaker Yousif Mohammed, a Gorran party member, from returning to the capital.
Senior KDP member Hoshyar Zebari told reporters after today's referendum committee meeting that they have made a “detailed proposal” to reactivate the parliament according to which the parliament speaker can return to his position.
“Our institutions, one of them is parliament, must be reactivated,” Zebari said, reiterating the fact that the referendum does not need an act from the parliament, but that is legitimacy will be more “valid” if the Kurdish parliament was functioning.
“We have presented a very detailed proposal to our brothers in Gorran, and other parties that we are prepared to again reactivate the parliament, even for the parliament speaker to return. But this must be done according to an agreement between the KDP, PUK, Gorran and other Kurdistan parties,” he added.
Reporter’s code: 50101