September 11, 2018 / 03:20 PM
Kurdish party deputies in Kirkuk hold meeting

Representatives of Kurdish political parties convened in Qara Hanjir on Tuesday, September 11, for talks on how to fill the vacancy left after Kirkuk's acting governor was elected as a member of the Iraqi parliament.

Party representatives also discussed attempts to end a stalemate that has faced the Kirkuk Provincial Council for nearly a year, NRT reported.

The Kirkuk Provincial Council has not convened since the October 2017 military operation by the Iraqi army against Kurdish forces because several members of the council left the city.

The representatives convened at Kurdistan Communist Party headquarters in Qara Hanjir, about 27 kilometers east of Kirkuk, because of fears that the Kurdistan Democratic Party (KDP) would not be able to participate in a meeting held inside the city.

The KDP deemed Iraq’s military operation in October as an attempt to “occupy” the city. It also boycotted  federal parliamentary election in the city in May.

Kurdish officials including the former governor, Najmadin Kareem, and acting head of the Kirkuk Provincial Council, Rebwar Talabani, have not returned to the city.

The KDP accused Peshmerga units aligned with the PUK of withdrawing from the area without mounting a proper defense.

The Patriotic Union of Kurdistan (PUK) has sought to reach an agreement with the Kurdistan Democratic Party (KDP) to take over the post of Kirkuk Governor, as part of negotiations to form the new Iraqi government.

The KDP, however, said it will use its veto power to block any candidate “involved in the October 16 incidents” from taking the position.

Reporter’s code: 50101