Posted on September 8, 2016 by Editorial Staff in Corruption, Kirkuk, Oil & Gas
Hero Ibrahim Ahmed, Jalal Talabani’s wife.
[size=11]Hero Talabani asks Baghdad to stop exporting oil through Kurdistan pipeline[/size]
SULAIMANI, Iraq’s Kurdistan region,— A senior leader of the Patriotic Union of Kurdistan, Hero Ibrahim Ahmed, criticized a revenue sharing agreement recently reached between Baghdad and Erbil in a letter sent to the Iraqi Prime Minister, threatening a halt to the flow of Kirkuk oil via pipeline.
In a letter released by PUK official media on Wednesday, Ahmed criticized the agreement for its lack of transparency and said it was made without consultation with her party. Besides threatening to suspend the oil flow, she denied any role in attempts to export Kirkuk oil through Iran.
“A decision by the federal government to transfer 100,000 barrels of oil per day (bpd) through the Kurdistan Region’s pipelines from Kirkuk oil fields is unfair toward the people of Kirkuk,” Ahmed said, cited by PUK media.
“The revenue of transferred Kirkuk oil is not spent transparently and fairly in the Kurdistan Region, and such a decision exiled the Kirkuk Governorate from petrodollar payments and caused a negative impact on the people’s livelihood,” the letter which was released by the PUK’s foreign relations center, continued.
Earlier on Wednesday, an official from the Kurdish Ministry of Natural Resources accused the PUK of selling Kirkuk’s oil via truck to Iran. “Without the knowledge of the Kurdistan Regional Government and Sulaimani governorate Kirkuk oil is being exported to Iran and its revenues are not known,” Dr. Sherko Jawdat wrote on his Facebook page.
He accused “people and companies” within the PUK’s administration of exporting 30,000 barrels per day to Iran with revenues of $30 million.
Ahmed refuted news released on August 30 by Asharq al-Awsat, which claimed she demanded the transfer of Kirkuk oil to Iran via tankers.
“I urge you to respond positively to this letter,” the statement said. “Otherwise you leave us no choice but to turn to another path, which would be to stop the flow of Kirkuk oil, since we are under pressure from the public and general opinion in the Kurdistan Region and Kirkuk.”
On August 30, Baghdad and Erbil reached an agreement to export 100,000 barrels of Kirkuk oil daily through Kurdish pipelines to Turkey, with revenues being shared jointly between the two governments. The agreement ended a five month stoppage of Kirkuk’s oil.
Officials from the KRG and Baghdad signed a revenue-sharing agreement in December 2014 which would have the Iraqi federal government provide the KRG with 17 percent of the federal budget in return for oil exports amounting to 550,000 bpd.
That deal collapsed months later when the KRG ceased transfers to the Iraqi State Oil Marketing Organization (SOMO) altogether. Baghdad in turn stopped transfers of budget payments.