Kurdish Officials Threaten to Reveal Documents Against Maliki

ERBIL, Kurdistan Region — Iraqi Kurdish officials are threatening to disclose secret documents as part of an ongoing dispute with Iraq’s Central Government.

“We have no other choice but to disclose documents revealing the secrets of [Prime Minister] Nuri Maliki and his office,” a government spokesperson said on Wednesday, adding that the documents will discredit many of the policies actively pursued by the Iraqi Prime Minister.

Maliki recently gave an interview to a Kurdish television station, NRT TV, during which he accused the KRG of signing illegal oil contracts with foreign companies and making illicit sales to other countries.

He also said that Iraq’s borders and all trade flowing into the country should be under the control of the central government.

The KRG has rejected Baghdad’s demands and Maliki told NRT that he “heard the drums of war coming from Kurdistan.”

Following the interview, the KRG released a harshly worded statement saying that it was running out of patience with Maliki who was merely reiterating old accusations.

Since Maliki was presenting himself as having the Kurds’ best interests at heart, the statement added, the regional government was obliged to reveal the documents and grant the public a better perspective on the current political turmoil.

“The documents we are revealing will refute his accusations and lies,” it concluded.

Maliki is also under fire from allies of Iraq’s popular Shia leader, Muqtadar al Sadr, who are accusing the Iraqi Prime Minister of attempting to disrupt relations between Jalal Talabani, leader of the Patriotic Union of Kurdistan and Massoud Barzani, president of the KRG and leader of the Kurdistan Democratic Party.

Mohammed Reza Khafaji, a member of the Iraqi parliament’s Sadrist Bloc, said that Maliki’s recent meeting with Talabani was an attempt to sever ties between the two leaders.

He also accused Maliki of trying to weaken the position of Tariq Hashimi’s Iraqiya bloc, the main competitor to Maliki’s State of Law Coalition. Maliki, Khafaji said, is using Article 140 for his own political gains.

Article 140 of the Iraqi constitution states that, prior to carrying out referendum in the disputed areas, measures should be taken to reverse the Arabization policy of former Iraqi leader Saddam Hussein, under which thousands of Kurds were displaced from their homes.