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Iraqi Budget Drives Another Wedge Between Baghdad, Kurds
By Omar Sattar

BAGHDAD -- On March 4, the Iraqi parliament completely disregarded the principle of consensus in place since 2003 and approved the general budget law by majority amid a Kurdish boycott and Shiite and Sunni objections to some sections.

The budget, which was supposed to be approved before the end of last year, cuts the Kurdistan Regional Government (KRG) share to 12.5% from 17%.

Kurdistan Democratic Party leader Massoud Barzani called the reduction "a clear violation of the principle of partnership."

In addition, the budget did not include allocations to the Iraqi Kurdistan peshmerga or Iraq's Popular Mobilization Units (PMU), which some critics said was unfair since those groups had helped defeat the Islamic State.

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