Economy, Business And Markets

Erbil Disputes Baghdad Border Control, as Iran Reopens Borders

Erbil Disputes Baghdad Border Control, as Iran Reopens BordersErbil Disputes Baghdad Border Control, as Iran Reopens Borders

Kurdistan Regional Government in northern Iraq has rejected handing over the border management to the Iraqi federal administration, saying that the law provides for joint administration, as Iran reopened its crossings with the semi-autonomous region, Turkish newspaper The Hurriyet Daily News reported on its website.

“Instructions and laws emphasize on joint administration and oversight on border crossings, and the region is prepared to discuss matters related to airports and border crossings,” Safeen Dizayee, a spokesperson of KRG, told Iraqi website Alghad Press.

“There is no phrase in the law or the instructions that provide for handing over crossings and airports, but instead offers joint administration,” Dizayee said.

“Kurdistan Region was, from the beginning, for resolving the problem through dialogue, and certainly technical issues require dialogue more than anything else.”

Iran reopened two crossings with the KRG on Jan. 2 that it had closed after a referendum in favor of independence for the semi-autonomous region.

After the referendum in September 2017, Iraqi Prime Minister Haider al-Abadi ordered troops to take control of areas claimed by both Baghdad and the Kurdish government.

Abadi wants to take control of the border crossings between the Kurdish region and Iran, Turkey and Syria, including one through which an oil export pipeline crosses into Turkey.

Iran, at the request of Baghdad, closed its borders with the Kurdish region in northern Iraq and halted all flights there and back.

“Tamarchin (also known as Haj Omran) and Parvizkhan border crossings with Erbil and Sulaymaniyah [respectively] that have been closed off by the formal request of Iraqi government, were opened on Thursday,” ISNA quoted the consulate of the Islamic Republic in Erbil as saying.

Earlier on Jan. 2, Ihsan al-Shamri, an adviser to Iraqi prime minister, said the government adopted a number of decisions toward dialogue with Erbil, which involves “[Baghdad] taking over Kurdistan’s border crossings with Iran and Turkey, and forming a high committee to regulate land ports, customs and airports”.

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