3 More Provinces To Be Handed Over to Iraqis

Business is booming in Irbil, Iraq.
Trade and Investiment Shows are planned.

A view from the tenth floor of the new Naz City Apartments in Irbil, located near the new state-of-the-art convention center and Irbil International Airport. A group of international investors traveled the stable northern region of Iraq and continued to meet with local business leaders, members of chambers of commerce and key government officials as some arranged for return trips to begin projects Friday. U.S. Army photo by Maj. Juanita Chang, 5th Mobile Public Affairs Detachment. (MNF-I)

Iraqi-American Haider Ajina sends this good news from Voices of Iraq an independent conglomerate Iraqi news agency:

Peshmerga fighters will receive the security file in Iraq’s Kurdistan region
By Abdul Hamid Zibari

Arbil, May 28, (VOI)- Voices of Iraq, The Peshmerga fighters will receive the security file in Iraq’s Kurdistan region from the Multi-National forces during a handover ceremony this week, an official source from Kurdistan government said on Monday.

“We have been discussing the hand over for several months, and we are prepared to receive the security file in Kurdistan region during a ceremony this week,” Jabar Yawar, Peshmerga second top official, told the independent news agency Voices of Iraq (VOI).

Iraqi Prime Minister Nouri al-Maliki will authorize Kurdistan President Massoud Barazani to sign a memorandum of understanding with the commander of the Multi-National forces, he added.

“The ceremony will be attended by al-Maliki , Barazani, Iraqi lawmakers and ambassadors of a number of countries, including U.S. and British diplomats,” the spokesman also said.

Yawar pointed out to a meeting to be held between representatives of the Peshmerga command and the Iraqi government on the suggestion that Peshmerga (local Kurdish fighters) would take part in maintaining security in the cities with a Kurdish majority outside Kurdistan region like Khaneqeen, Mandli, al-Saadiyah and Mosul.

“We want to have high-level talks with coalition forces and the Iraqi government regarding the Peshmerga’s participation in preserving security in these cities in a legal way,” he noted.

Kurdistan region, a safe region in northern Iraq, is composed of three Kurdish provinces: Arbil, Sulaimaniya and Duhuk.

Haider Ajina comments:

Three more provinces are being handed over to the Iraqis to take over security responsibilities. The Kurds in northern Iraq have had an almost autonomous protected area since we liberated Kuwait in February 1991. Our protection of the Kurdish region after liberating Kuwait allowed the Kurds to flourish. They flourished economically and politically. They have had over 16 years of practice in self governance and local democracy, along with a formidable militia known as the Peshmerga. The Peshmerga fighters were the strongest Iraqi armed resistance to Saddam during his rule. They are tough, well trained, agile and well equipped.

The Kurds’ unique language makes it very difficult to be infiltrated by Al Qaeda or other terrorist groups. By the way, most of Iraqi Kurds are Sunni Muslims. These Sunni Muslims and their Arab Shiite Muslim brethren have formed the majority elected new Iraqi government a year ago, with President Jelal Talabani (Kurd Sunni Muslim) and Prime Minister Nourie Al-Maliki (Arab Shiite Muslim) at the helm. Here we have Iraqi Shiite and Sunni working side by side to serve their country.

Kurdistan in its three provinces of Arbil, Sulaimaniya and Dehuck covers 14673.4 sq mi of Iraqi territory and a population of 3.8 million Iraqis. This represents 3.4% of Iraq’s territory and 15.2% of the population. In the south the provinces of Maysan, Nejaf, Muthena & Dhi Qar are already under Iraqi provincial control. By the time the hand over of the Kurdish provinces is complete seven out of eighteen Iraqi provinces will be under provincial control. The provinces under full Iraqi control, after the Kurdish provinces are handed over, will be a total of 35.4% of Iraq’s territory and 29% of the population.

All this has been achieved, in a country with little experience in democracy and the rule of law in its recent history and after 30 years of tyrannical rule, and only 4 short years since the liberation, and combating terrorists trying to destabilize an elected government.

Haider Ajina
Jules Crittenden has more news from Iraq.

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