Iraq’s 2019 budget, passed by parliament 24 January, formalized the central government’s payments to KRG state workers and Peshmerga forces, further affirming the thawing relations between Baghdad and Erbil after the KRG’s ill-fated 2017 independence referendum (MEES, 29 September 2017).

“The good thing is public servants’ salaries and Peshmerga are not subject to political disputes,” Kurdish MP Sarkawt Shamsaddin told the AFP. (CONTINUED - 215 WORDS)