Garraf oil field Photo credit: KMSK

Live: All the news from Kurdistan Region and Iraq as oil export talks continue

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Halbousi describes the Federal Supreme Court's decision to end his membership in parliament as "strange."

Shafaq News Agency reported that Halbousi accused unnamed parties of trying to divide the political components of society during today's parliamentary session.

In his speech, he expressed surprise at the court's ruling, questioning its constitutional validity and the origins of its directives. Halbousi said, "The Federal Court terminated my membership, which is a strange decision. We are surprised by the issuance of such decisions and their apparent disregard for the Constitution." 

He added that he plans to pursue legal measures to uphold constitutional rights, stating, "We will resort to legal procedures that preserve constitutional rights."


Former Speaker Halbusi has not yet commented on the supreme court's decision. Independent MP Basem Khashan praised the verdict, telling Al-Sumaria News, "The federal court is the protector of Iraq and the constitution. Its decision on Al-Halbousi's membership is both wonderful and deserved. The court holds general jurisdiction over constitutional matters, particularly those concerning the formation of the House of Representatives, the highest legislative body."

Khashan noted, "Upon examining Al-Halbousi's membership and identifying the violation, the court was compelled to act, demonstrating its commitment to its responsibilities and the trust placed in it by the people. This extraordinary decision is unparalleled in the Arab world's constitutional courts."

He emphasized the ruling's significance, stating, "This decision marks the beginning of the end for constitutional violations, paving the way for Parliament to execute its duties more effectively and precisely." Khashan concluded his remarks by congratulating the Iraqi people and expressing gratitude toward the Federal Court.

Shafaq News reports that Mohammad Al-Halbousi postponed the parliamentary session before its commencement upon receiving news about the termination of his membership.

"A parliamentary source informed Shafaq News Agency that Al-Halbousi decided to adjourn the session until further notice and left the Parliament immediately after the Federal Court's decision was issued."

شفق نيوز/ رفع رئيس مجلس النواب محمد الحلبوسي، يوم الثلاثاء، الجلسة البرلمانية قبيل انعقادها، بعد أن تلقى خبر إنهاء عضويته على خلفية دعوى قضائية سبق وأن رفعها ضده النائب "السابق" ليث الدليمي.ونظرت ا
شفق نيوز

Confirming the report, the FSC issued this statement

"On Tuesday 11/14/2023, the Federal Supreme Court heard the case No. 9/Federal/2023.

"According to the ruling issued therein, it was decided to terminate the membership of the Speaker of the House of Representatives, Muhammad Rekan Al-Halbousi, and to terminate the membership of Representative Laith Mustafa Hamoud Al-Dulaimi, as of the date of issuance of the ruling on 11/14/2023.

"This is a final decision that is binding on all authorities."


The Federal Court of Iraq has ordered the termination of Iraqi Parliament Speaker Mohammad Al-Halbousi's membership, according to Laith Al-Dulaimi's lawyer. Dulaimi, a former member of Al-Halbousi's Taqaddum party, had filed a lawsuit challenging his own dismissal from parliament by Halbousi.

Dulaimi, who was expelled from the Taqaddum party in April 2022 for defying the party whip, reentered the parliament in June as a member of the Sovereignty Alliance led by Khamis Al-Khanjar. He had previously criticized his exclusion from the Iraqi Council of Representatives as 'illegal and arbitrary,' accusing Halbousi of dictatorial practices.


Breaking! Halbousi ejected as speaker by federal supreme court


Turkish drone strikes in Sinjar's Sinune subdistrict on Monday night resulted in the deaths of a commander and another fighter from the Sinjar Resistance Units (YBS), a group linked to the Kurdistan Workers' Party (PKK), the Kurdistan Region’s Counter Terrorism Directorate General reported. The strikes targeted a vehicle carrying YBS fighters in the predominantly Yezidi town. Details of the attack were limited.

Separately, Turkish intelligence announced the 'neutralization' of Remzi Avci, allegedly the PKK leader in Iraq’s northern Kirkuk province. State-run Anadolu Agency reported Tuesday that Avci, codenamed Ciya Amed and on Turkey's most-wanted list, joined the PKK in 1992. He is believed to have played a significant role in the PKK's 2016 operations in southeastern Turkey’s Diyarbakir province. Turkish authorities use 'neutralize' to imply that a target was killed, captured, or surrendered.

Additionally, Turkish security forces claimed to have 'neutralized' 10 PKK militants in the Kurdistan Region's Qandil and Hakurk areas, the National Defense Ministry stated Tuesday.

Mikhail Bogdanov, Russia's Special Envoy to the Middle East and Africa and Deputy Foreign Minister, engaged in discussions about the Israeli-Palestinian conflict with Sheikh Mahdi Mosuli, a representative of Ayatollah Ali Sistani, Iraq's leading Shia Muslim cleric, during meetings held in Moscow. 
In their exchange, they focused on pertinent issues in the Middle East, particularly the circumstances in and around Iraq, along with the significant escalation of the Palestinian-Israeli conflict, as reported by the Russian Ministry of Foreign Affairs in a statement published on their website on November 13.

Russia has undergone a strategic pivot since the start of its full-scale invasion of Ukraine that initially appeared to be merely tactical. The need to shore up its offensive capability after devastating losses, going to Iran for help with stuff like kamikaze drones Shahed drones. Israel has been particularly irate at Russia's stance towards its war with Hamas since the latter group launched a brutal rampage last month that left 1200 Israelis dead.

As all eyes are on the recent intense meetings between Baghdad and Erbil officials in the Kurdistan Region capital

Here's the latest from this morning:

KRG PM Masrour Barzani told party media outlets that there is a possibility of resuming exports, but “Kurdistan Region's rights must be taken into account according to the Iraqi constitution.” Barzani described the meeting with the Iraqi delegation led by oil minister Hayan Abdul Ghani as “good” and said that the KRG has fulfilled its duties, including technical and legal measures. Barzani also mentioned the KRI’s share of the Iraqi federal budget in the same context, indicating that more complex negotiations are underway.

It is known that the KRG and International Oil Companies (IOCs) are demanding increased costs for production, transportation, and oil expenditures in the Kurdistan Region. However, according to the Iraqi budget law, these costs in the KRI should be on par with the rest of Iraq.

Oil Minister Hayan Abdul Ghani, in an interview with Nechirvan Barzani-linked Rudaw TV, said that proposals are on the table to overhaul the types of contracts the KRG has with the IOCs. He stated, “Initially, the discussion focused on the nature of the oil contracts signed with extraction companies. These contracts are structured as production sharing contracts. However, for us in the federal government, it's not constitutionally feasible to handle such contracts in this manner. Consequently, there was a discussion about altering the format of these contracts and introducing a new economic model for them. The Ministry of Natural Resources provided a comprehensive explanation of these contracts to the Federal Ministry of Oil, clarifying the nature of the contracts and delineating the roles and responsibilities of the federal government department, the regional government department, and the corporate department.”

He further explained, “We have a project to adjust these contracts in a way that conforms with the Iraqi constitution. As you know, within the framework of the fifth licensing round, the Ministry of Oil has signed contracts with a number of companies on a profit-sharing basis, rather than a production-sharing basis. With God's help, we have agreed to adjust the contracts in this manner."


Genel Energy posts Q3 trading update

Key highlights

  • Pipeline Shutdown: The Iraq-Türkiye pipeline remains closed, impacting international sales, but local sales volumes have been consistent.
  • Cost Reductions: On track with forecasted cost reductions; debt reduced by nearly 10%.
  • Cash and Capital Expenditure: Cash stands at $391 million as of September 30, 2023, with capital expenditure of $12 million in Q3. Cash on hand down $34m since June.
  • Debt Management: Total debt reduced by $25 million in H2 2023, now at $248 million.
  • Overdue Payments: $110 million overdue from the Kurdistan Regional Government for past oil sales.

Safety and operations

  • No lost time incidents reported in 2023, with over two years and four million hours worked since the last incident.

Financial outlook
  • Domestic Sales: Increase expected in Q4 from Tawke.
  • Capex Reduction: 2023 capital expenditure expected to be around $70 million, down from initial guidance of $100 to $125 million.

Operations details

  • Tawke PSC: Profitable from local sales, with gross production of 25,980 barrels per day (bopd) in Q3.
  • Sarta: Intention to surrender the Sarta asset by December 2023.
  • Taq Taq PSC: No production since May 2023 due to pipeline closure.


A hearing scheduled for February 2024 regarding Genel's claim for compensation from the Kurdistan Regional Government after the termination of the Miran and Bina Bawi PSCs.

Despite encouraging comments from senior politicians, the Iraq-Türkiye pipeline remains shut. Good progress has been made in achieving consistency of domestic sales volumes… Tawke is now cash generative from local sales.

Genel CEO Paul Weir