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Erbil Governor warned us that no protests are allowed in the city: KIU lawmaker

2020-05-28

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SULAIMANI — Kurdistan Islamic Union (KIU) lawmaker in the Kurdistan Parliament Abubakr Haladni said on Thursday (May 28) that Erbil Governor Firsat Sofi used recent meetings with several other political parties to inform them that they will not be allowed to hold any sort of protest or demonstration in the city in the near future.

He said in a statement that the message was communicated “as if Erbil belongs to the governing party,” referring to the Kurdistan Democratic Party (KDP), of which Sofi is a member.

“They forgot that even with the fraud and forgeries they only got less than 30 percent of the vote in the governorate,” he added.

Political temperatures are high in the Kurdistan Region at the moment, as the government grapples with a profound financial crisis caused by low oil prices and a budget dispute with Baghdad. As a result, it may not be able to pay public sector salaries, which could cause significant unrest.

On May 16, approximately 100 people were arrested during a protest in Duhok, a KDP heartland, organized by teachers and civil servants angry at delays in the disbursement of their salaries.

Without providing evidence, the KDP accused the KIU and other parties of organizing the demonstration.

“Be sure that the injustice and cruelty of the authority in the Region will shake their palaces,” Haladni added.

Earlier on Thursday, KIU Leadership Council head Hadi Ali said that Kurdistan Regional Government's (KRG) decision to continue to prohibit travel between governorates was not primarily a public health measure, but designed to tamp down on protests, although he also did not back up the allegation with any proof.

(NRT Digital Media)