Masoud Barzani, president of Iraq’s Kurdistan region, announced he won’t extend his current term when it ends on Wednesday.
Barzani sent a letter to the Kurdistan Region Parliament on Sunday refusing the extension of his term and promising to remain a member of the Peshmerga military forces.
“I refuse to continue in my post as the Kurdistan Region President and neither the Presidency law should be amended, nor the President’s term extended,” Barzani wrote. “As a Peshmerga, among the people, and the dear Peshmergas, I will continue the struggle for achieving the rights of our nation and preserving its achievements.”
Barzani instructed parliament to convene as soon as possible to ensure there is no “legal vacuum” in the execution of the president’s duties.
Barzani’s party, the Kurdistan Democratic Party, said he will dedicate his time away from the office of president to serve on the Peshmerga fronts and increase their willpower and morale.
The KDP added Barzani will continue his effort to “develop and further strengthen democratic principles in Kurdistan, protect the achievements of our nation, and maintain and develop Kurdistan’s legitimate institutions.”
By Daniel Uria