Shafaq News / The Kurdistan Democratic Party (KDP) suggested re-establishing its headquarters in the disputed areas before the end of the current year.
The Party was forced to leave its headquarters in the disputed areas covered by Article 140 of the Constitution, after the Iraqi forces, backed by al-Hashd al-shaabi, launched a military operation following the independence referendum held by Kurdistan Region in September 2017.
Article 140 provides for the removal of demographic policies implemented by Saddam Hussein's regime in the disputed areas in favor of the Arabs at the expense of the Kurds, and then census the population before holding a referendum according to which the population will determine whether they wish to join the Kurdistan Region or remain under Baghdad's administration.
The article was supposed to be fully implemented by the end of 2007, but security and political problems prevented it.
However, the Federal Supreme Court ruled in 2019 that Article (140) of the Iraqi Constitution should remain in force until its requirements are implemented and the objective of its legislation is achieved.
The official of the 22nd branch of the Kurdistan Democratic Party - Garmyan (Kalar, Kifri, Darbandikhan, Tuz Khurmatu, and its affiliated districts), Akram Salih, said that the return of the Democratic Party's headquarters to Kirkuk, Tuz Khurmatu, Makhmour, and Diyala regions is agreed upon according to gradual stages.
Salih told Shafaq News Agency that the agreements and understandings with the government authorities have reached advanced stages, suggesting that the party will return to its areas before the end of the current year.
"Many of the Democratic Party's headquarters in the disputed areas are occupied by security forces and government departments, and require rehabilitation that might take some time. However, the restoration of the party's pre-2017 activity is inevitable", he added.
Salih announced establishing KDP headquarters in Kirkuk for the candidates' electoral campaigns, noting that they have not been opened yet, but negotiations are ongoing to solve the issue.
The Kurdish official denied the existence of harassment or impediments facing the party's candidates in Kirkuk, Tuz Khurmatu, and other areas, pointing out that electoral campaigns are proceeding normally.