September 3, 2016
An Iranian delegation arrived in Sulaimani on Friday to mediate a dispute between two Patriotic Union of Kurdistan (PUK) factions. They are also expected to meet with the leader of the Gorran party, Nawshirwan Mustafa.
The delegations aim is to solve this internal PUK crisis by becoming a mediator between the newly established PUK decision-making body and the PUK’s majority-group.
They are expected to meet with these factions on Saturday. They will also meet with the leader of the Gorran Movement, Nawshirwan Mustafa.
Arkan Ali, a Rudaw correspondent in Sulaimani, said that these two rival PUK factions will have separate meetings ahead of their meeting with the Iranian delegation.
Kosrat Rassul Ali, first deputy of the PUK, and Barham Salih, second deputy, formed the decision-making body which they say is backed by several members of the PUK politburo, leadership committee, and MPs on Thursday.
The decision-making body released a message supported by several members of the PUK politburo, leadership committee, and MPs, which accused a group inside the PUK of controlling the party, declaring: “We waited for too long and were patient. But this group directly and indirectly is increasingly participating in harmful policies, taking public wealth, cutting the salaries of the people and the Peshmerga. In Erbil, they are part of the cabinet and receive oil bonuses. But when they are in Sulaimani, they are critical and unsatisfied,” reads the statement.
“We will no longer be silent. We have decided that, until the PUK congress is held, we establish a decision-making body. No decision will be recognized or considered legitimate if made outside of this body,” the statement added.
Also the Patriotic Union of Kurdistan’s (PUK) majority-group – which is led by Hero Ibrahim Ahmed, the spouse of the party’s leader Jalal Talabani – issued a statement on Friday in response to the decision-making body. In that response they said, among other things, that: “Declaring any organ or body which is not approved according to the PUK’s bylaw lacks legitimacy.”
Ahmed also declared on Friday that, “Nobody is allowed to talk about the post of secretary-general of the Patriotic Kurdistan, neither now nor in the future as long as Mam Jalal is alive.”