Iraqi Kurds and Central Government Agree to Talk

AP – Iraq’s top military spokesman says that Iraqi and Kurdish security officials have reached an agreement to defuse tension between the central government and the self-ruled autonomous region over disputed northern areas.

Colonel Dhia al-Wakeel said Monday that both sides would look for ways to withdraw the reinforcements sent to the disputed region during the recent crisis.

He said the co-ordination committees between rival forces will work to calm the situation in northern Iraq.

Tensions between Baghdad and the Kurdish region flared last month after Iraqi Prime Minister Nouri al-Maliki formed a new military command to oversee security forces bordering the self-ruled Kurdish region, including units deployed in disputed areas claimed by Iraqi Arabs, Turkomen and Kurds.