Uncertainty as Iraq election results revealed
By Suadad al-Salhy and Cathy Otten, May 26, 2014
On May 23, Kurdistan’s Ministry of Natural Resources announced it had exported crude oil from Kurdistan to world markets via Turkey, without Baghdad’s consent. Iraq’s oil ministry responded by declaring legal action against Turkey. “If indeed Turkey is allowing for the sale of oil on international markets without Baghdad’s consent, then there is very little that Baghdad could do to encourage the Kurds to support a third term [for Maliki],” said Zaid al-Ali, a political analyst and author of the book The Struggle for Iraq’s Future. Kurds, however, feel that Maliki did not honour commitments he made when they backed him for a second term in 2010; among them, an agreement over the passing of an oil and gas law. Opponents also fear Maliki’s tendency to consolidate power through the security forces, said al-Ali. “That will make it very difficult to convince any potential partners of his trustworthiness,” he said.