Meets senior Iraqi leaders

KDP leader Masoud Barzani visits Baghdad

BAGHDAD – Masoud Barzani, leader of the Kurdistan Democratic Party (KDP), arrived in Baghdad on Wednesday for his first visit since 2018. He was received at Baghdad International Airport by several senior Iraqi officials, including Foreign Minister and Deputy Prime Minister Fuad Hussein, Planning Minister and Deputy Prime Minister Mohammed Ali Tamim, and Defense Minister Thabet Al-Abbasi, in an unusually high-profile reception for a party leader.

Later in the day, Barzani met with federal Prime Minister Mohammed Shia Al-Sudani to discuss public services, economic reforms, and “institutional development of the state” in accordance with the constitution and law, according to a statement from the prime minister’s media office.

The discussions also focused on organizing administrative and executive matters between the federal government and the Kurdistan Regional Government (KRG) across various fields to ensure services reach citizens throughout Iraq. Barzani expressed his “gratitude to Al-Sudani for his cooperation and appreciated his role in overcoming obstacles with the Kurdistan Region of Iraq,” the statement read.

Al-Sudani hosted a luncheon for Barzani and his delegation, attended by leaders and representatives of various political forces, including State of Law Coalition leader Nouri Al-Maliki, Hikma Movement leader Ammar Al-Hakim, Acting Speaker of Parliament Mohsen Al-Mandalawi, and prominent Sunni leader Khamis Al-Khanjar.

In a separate meeting, Barzani met with the President of the Supreme Judicial Council Faiq Zaidan to discuss several legal and judicial files and developing the judiciary’s work in the Kurdistan Region, according to a statement from the council’s media office.

Barzani’s visit coincides with the Iraq Federal Supreme Court’s clarification allowing the KRG’s MyAccount initiative to use both public and private banks for its salary domiciliation program. KRG Prime Minister Masrour Barzani hailed this decision as bringing “more certainty to the Erbil-Baghdad relationship and creating space to resolve other disputes.”

Barzani’s trip has generated hopes for resolving longstanding disputes between the federal government and the KRG, particularly on budget issues, salaries of KRG employees, and the resumption of Kurdistan’s oil exports through Turkey. The KDP has recently sought to improve relations with Iran and Baghdad, leading to favorable decisions from Baghdad authorities on financial matters and organizing Kurdistan’s parliamentary elections.

Barzani is scheduled to stay in Baghdad for two days, holding meetings with Iraq’s top political leaders as well as ambassadors from foreign nations, including the United States, China, Russia, Britain, and Turkey.

Masoud Barzani, British ambassador discuss Iraqi political developments

Masoud Barzani, British ambassador discuss Iraqi political developments

Masoud Barzani dismisses Iran's 'Mossad' accusations

Masoud Barzani dismisses Iran's 'Mossad' accusations