Once again the United States is stepping up to handle the salaries of the Peshmerga despite Iraqi criticism and their apparent inability or unwillingness to do it themselves. The United States will be giving the Ministry of Peshmerga approximately $365 million this year over several installments. The ministry confirmed they have received the first on and will be using it this week to fund Peshmerga wages. This is not the first time the United States has had to step in and provide wages for Kurdistan’s forces because of Iraqi central government negligence.
An Iraqi Minister of Parliament, Firdaws al-Awadi, has expressed that the United States providing financial aid to the Peshmerga will insight rebellion in Kurdistan. Firdaws al-Awadi is part of the State of Law Coalition which is run by Nouri al-Maliki. Maliki is the former prime minister and current Iraqi vice president. Awadi said, “Delivering financial aid for the Peshmerga from a bank account in the US shows disrespect to the sovereignty of Iraq and is an encouragement for the Peshmerga to rebel against the Iraqi government. Delivering this money to an armed national force in Iraq without knowledge of the Iraqi government is a big problem.” Her implication is that the United States is potentially funding an armed coup.
She continued to say, “The US is trying to build an armed force as strong as that of Iraq or even stronger in order to use it to confront the crises that might arise in the future. I think the US doesn’t want good for Iraq and is to this day trying to divide the country. This financial aid is just one of the plans to divide the country. Is Iraqi Prime Minister Haider al-Abadi aware of this aid? It is a disaster if he is aware of this. If he is not, he should immediately take international legal procedures. He shouldn’t allow the US to play with the sovereignty and honor of Iraq.”
Featured Image Courtesy of U.S. Army photo by SPC Anderson Savoy [Public domain], via Wikimedia Commons