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Opposition Parties Accuse KRG of Mishandling Budget

Kurdish oppposition politicians have accused the Kurdistan Regional Government of mismanagement ahead of deliberations on the 2013 federal budget, of which the region will receive an estimated $18 billion, writes Abdel Hamid Zebari.
Kurdish Regional Government President Massoud Barzani (C) speaks in a meeting with Kurdish envoys abroad as Prime Minister Barham Salih (R) of Iraq's Kurdistan region looks on in Arbil, about 350 km (220 miles) north of Baghdad September 6, 2011. Speaker of Kurdistan's parliament Kamal Kirkuki is seen on the left.  REUTERS/Azad Lashkari (IRAQ - Tags: POLITICS) - RTR2QV63
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Ever since opposition forces emerged in the Iraqi Kurdistan Parliament following the 2009 elections, in which they won more than a quarter of the seats, there has been discussion regarding the region's budget law.

The region receives 17% of the total Iraqi federal budget. As this amount is expected to be about $18 billion in 2013, the opposition has intensified its accusations against the region's two ruling parties, claiming that they have wasted money and used the budget for partisan purposes. These parties are the Kurdistan Democratic Party, led by Kurdistan President Massoud Barzani, and the Patriotic Union of Kurdistan, led by Jelal Talabani, who currently holds the post of Iraqi president.

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