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US should continue to work with Kurds to prevent ISIS resurgence, security expert says

US should continue to work with Kurds to prevent ISIS resurgence, security expert says

2019/05/15 | 20:55

(Hatha al-Youm | Iraq News)- Wormuth also spoke about relations between the KRG and the Iraqi government, particularly regarding the ongoing dispute surrounding contested areas.

The fate of disputed territories between Erbil and Baghdad, namely Kirkuk, was constitutionally determined based on Article 140, which requires a referendum to be held in the province for people to decide on the future of the province: whether it should be part of the KRG or the federal government.

The date of the referendum was set to December 2007, but over a decade has since passed. The article goes unimplemented and is one of the long-standing disputes between Erbil and Baghdad.

Moreover, the military ousting of Peshmerga forces from Kirkuk and other disputed areas in October 2017 by Iraqi forces and Iran- backed Shia militias has led to a deteriorated security situation in the region. There are also complaints of an ongoing campaign of demographic change in the province with Kurds forcibly removed from their homes and replaced with Arabs.  

Read More: Kurdish village fears ‘demographic change’ as hundreds come to unlawfully claim land

Wormuth said she hopes both governments “work together to figure out how to deal with some of those territorial disputes.”

“I don’t want to see the Kurdish Peshmerga, for example, going into areas that are contested because I think that, overall, will increase tensions, which isn’t good for anyone.”

Before her role with RAND, Wormuth served as the Undersecretary for Defense Policy of the United States at the Department of Defense from 2014 to 2016 under the Obama administration.







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