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Saturday, July 25, 2009

Defining Kirkuk: How Much Hangs on a Census?

Rod Nordland writes:

When Iraqis were drafting their Constitution in 2005, the parties could not agree on who would control Kirkuk, the prized oil capital of the north. They couldn’t even agree on who lived in Kirkuk, which is claimed by the region’s Kurds, but also by its Turkmen minority and Sunni Arabs. For that matter, they couldn’t even agree on where Kirkuk was — in Tamim, Erbil, or Sulaimaniya Province.

Iraq So the Iraqis punted, inserting Article 140, a clause that called for a national census, followed by a referendum on the status of Kirkuk, all to be held by the end of 2007. What followed were a succession of delays, against a backdrop of sectarian violence and warnings that Kirkuk could blow apart the Shiite-Kurdish alliance that has governed Iraq since the Americans invaded.

link: Now It’s a Census That Could Rip Iraq Apart -


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