Sulaimani Provincial Council members demand answers about recent forest fires

A number of the Sulaimani Provincial Council members holds a news conference after they boycotted an extraordinary meeting that was scheduled for September 30, 2020. (Photo Credit: NRT Digital Media)

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SULAIMANI — Almost two-thirds of the Sulaimani Provincial Council boycotted an extraordinary meeting that was scheduled for Wednesday (September 30), saying that the agenda did not reflect their priorities.

During a press conference, Ramazan Namiq, who represents the Kurdistan Islamic Group (KIG), said that the Council should have summoned relevant officials to answer questions about recent forest fires in the governorate.

This month, fires burned a large section of Goizha Mountain and parts of a forest along the Sulaimani-Tasluja Road, with rumors that the latter blaze was set deliberately to clear land for development, which officials have denied.

On September 20, Head of Sulaimani Provincial Council Azad Muhammed Amin accused the Kurdistan Regional Government (KRG) of carelessness, saying that it needs to increase budget allocations for forests and the environment.

“We call for another extraordinary meeting regarding the fires with the presence of the relevant authorities and officials,” Namiq added.

Nearly twenty of the Council’s 30 members signed a letter saying that they refused to hold the meeting as it was structured.

(NRT Digital Media)