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Cablegate: Unification of Krg Justice Ministry

VZCZCXRO3020
PP RUEHBC RUEHDA RUEHDE RUEHIHL RUEHKUK
DE RUEHGB #0624 0520557
ZNR UUUUU ZZH
P 210557Z FEB 07
FM AMEMBASSY BAGHDAD
TO RUEHC/SECSTATE WASHDC PRIORITY 9789
INFO RUCNRAQ/IRAQ COLLECTIVE

UNCLAS BAGHDAD 000624

SIPDIS

SIPDIS

E.O. 12958: N/A
TAGS: PGOV KDEM IZ
SUBJECT: UNIFICATION OF KRG JUSTICE MINISTRY


This is a Regional Reconstruction Team Erbil cable.

1. (SBU) SUMMARY: Kurdistan Regional Government (KRG)
authorities attended formal ceremonies to mark the
long-awaited unification of the PUK and KDP Ministries of
Justice 6 February 2007. The separate PUK and KDP ministries
of Finance, Interior, and Peshmerga continue working on
resolution of outstanding organizational structure,
budgeting, and control issues. END SUMMARY.

2. (SBU) KRG Prime Minister Nechirvan Barzani (KDP), Deputy
Prime Minister Omar Fatah (PUK), Deputy Speaker of the KNA
Kamal Kirkuki (KDP), and other notables attended a ceremony
at the Ministry of Justice building in Erbil to mark the
unification of the two KRG ministries of Justice. The
ministries of Finance, Interior, and Peshmerga (regional
defense) are still under the separate control of the KDP in
the provinces of Erbil and Dohuk and the PUK in the province
of Sulaimaniyah, a legacy of the separate PUK and KDP regimes
until 2006.

3. (SBU) The now-former KDP Minister of Justice, Azad
Mullah Effendi, will retain the rank of minister of region
(often internally termed minister of state,). The PUK
Minister of Justice Faruq Makki will direct the newly
combined KRG Ministry of Justice.

4. (SBU) KRG PM Nechirvan Barzani, in his speech on this
occasion, said the KRG should use the opportunity of the
ministry,s unification to review all laws and procedures.
He asked for foreign advisors to assist this process and said
the entire judicial system should be re-evaluated. Stressing
the importance of justice in democratic life, he called for a
new focus on the rule of law.

5. (SBU) Comment: Each of the remaining divided ministries
-- Finance, Interior, and Peshmerga ) presents a different
fundamental challenge to the evolving KRG political system.
Trust between the PUK and KDP is still tentative at the level
of ministers and directors general in the ministries touching
on security, because most of these office holders were
actively involved in the military confrontations between the
two parties in the 1990s. Integrating financial oversight
would provide transparency between the party apparatuses even
if not to Baghdad, and this is also a highly sensitive point
within the KRG. It is probable that unification of these
remaining ministries, especially those handling security,
will be delayed because of the two parties, unwillingness to
relinquish party control of armaments and troops. End
Comment.
KHALILZAD

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