On October 19, The Kurdistan Regional Government (KRG) welcomed in an official statement Iraqi Prime Minister Haider al-Abadi’s call for dialogue. Moreover, the KRG’s Council of Ministers called on the international community to help Erbil and Baghdad to begin a talks.
— DMI KRG (@DMI_KRG) October 19, 2017
“The Council of Ministers welcomes Iraqi Prime Minister Haider al-Abadi’s call for negotiations to address the issues between the Kurdistan Regional Government and Iraqi Federal Government, within the framework of the federal constitution, and based on partnership and consensus,” the KRG said in its official statement.
Back on October 17, al-Abadi called for dialogue with the KRG within the “framework of the Iraqi Constitution” to solve all problems. Abad call for dialogue proves that the Iraqi Federal Government is not looking at the military solution as the only option to solve the Kurdish-Iraqi crisis.
Iraqi sources reported on October 20 that al-Abadi ordered the Iraqi Army stay out of the administrative borders of Erbil city, the capital of the Iraqi Kurdistan Region. The order came hours after the Iraqi Army captured Altun Kupri town at the Erbil-Kirkuk highway.
Also on October 20, Shiite religious scholar Ali al-Husseini al-Sistani called the Iraqi Federal government during Friday prayer in Karbala city to protect the Iraqi Kurds in northern Iraq. Al-Sistani is known as the spiritual leader of Iraqi Shia Muslims, and he is one of the key founders of the Iraqi Popular Mobilization Units (PMU).
Al-Sistani statement came after many Iraqi and Kurdish outlets reported several clashes between the PMU and the Peshmerga north of Kirkuk city. The statement will likely ease the tension between the Peshmerga and the PMU, and boost the diplomatic effort of the Iraqi Federal Government.