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UK hopes Baghdad, Erbil resolve outstanding issues: official

  2021-03-16  | 
 Zhyan News Network
British Consul-General in Erbil James Thornton lays a wreath to the Martyrs' Graveyard in Halabja, Kurdistan Region, Iraq, March 16,2021. Photo by UK Consul-General, Graphic by Zhyan News Network
 Zhyan News Network

SULAIMANI – UK hopes the Kurdistan Regional Government (KRG) and the Iraqi Government resolve their outstanding problems over oil, budget and payments to the Kurdistan Region’s civil servants, British Consul-General James Thornton said on Tuesday (March 16).

During a visit to Halabja city to take part in the 33rd anniversary of chemical attack on the city, Thornton met with Halabja Governor Azad Tofiq and paid tribute to the victims by laying a wreath of memorial to the Marty's' Graveyard, UK consul-general said in statement.  

On March 16, 1988, the Baathist regime of Saddam Hussein bombed Halabja city with Weapons of Mass Destruction (WMDs) using mustard gas, the nerve agents’ sarin, tabun, VX and possibly cyanide, which have the capability to suffocate and kill people in less than a minute.

Over 5,000 civilians were killed and over 10,000 were injured including children, women and men and wounding over 10,000 more.

“Today we remember those Kurds who were the subject of unimaginable violence and suffering. The attack on Halabja cannot be forgotten, so that it may never happen again,” UK consulate general in Erbil said in a tweet. “Our thoughts and support are with all Kurds today.”

The Kurdistan Regional Government (KRG) and the Government of Iraq have been in long-running negotiations regarding the amount of oil or in-kind and a portion of non-oil incomes it should submit to the federal authority to receive its budget share in return.

On Tuesday, KRG Spokesperson Jotiar Adil said that a KRG delegation will visit Baghdad on Tuesday for talks with the federal authorities for talks about the federal budget bill.

According to the current version of the bill, the KRG should submit 250,000 barrels of oil per day (bpd) and half of the non-oil incomes to the federal government to receive its budget share in return which 12.67 percent of the federal budget.

(Zhyan English)