When Iraqi Prime Minister Haider al-Abadi flippantly offered to pay the KRG salaries during a recent television interview, he touched a very raw nerve with the Kurds. Two weeks earlier, Abadi had mentioned the idea of receiving KRG and Kirkuk oil in exchange for a return of federal payments to KRG employees when he met
On 28 January a range of Iraqi leaders gathered in Baghdad for the first of a series of high-profile conferences every six weeks aimed at demonstrating national unity. Convened and chaired by Iraqi President Fouad Massoum, the meeting’s agenda was set by the president’s office after extensive dialogue with the participants.
On 16 August Oil Minister Adel Abd’al-Mahdi issued a statement outlining ideas for a radically stripped-down 2016 federal budget. In one of the opening shots in the campaign to build a new austerity budget, Abd’al-Mahdi envisaged basing the budget on a very low assumed oil price of “$40-50/barrel” and “3mn bpd of exports from the
Prime Minister Haider al-Abadi’s visit to Washington earlier this month set the seal on his first half-year in office, underlining the strong international support he still enjoys and further strengthening his hand in domestic politics. In the early days of his administration, it was easy to characterize Abadi as a puppet or a political lightweight.
When Prime Minister Haider al-Abadi visited the White House on 14 April, there was room for three other officials on the couch reserved for the Iraqi delegation in addition to Abadi himself. Notably, Hussein Shahristani, the former deputy prime minister for energy, had a seat – albeit the furthest from Prime Minister Abadi and US