the WHITE HOUSEPresident Barack Obama

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The White House
Office of the Vice President
For Immediate Release

Readout of the Vice President’s Call with President of the Iraqi Kurdistan Region Masoud Barzani

Vice President Biden spoke today with President of the Iraqi Kurdistan Region Masoud Barzani.  On behalf of the United States, the Vice President extended a Happy Nowruz to the Kurdish people in the region.  He further reaffirmed that the United States remains committed to Iraq and to all Iraqi citizens as they strive to build a state consistent with the Iraqi constitution and its vision of a democratic, federal, pluralistic, and united Iraq.  The United States continues to emphasize the importance of the general elections to be held on April 30, and the right of all Iraqi citizens to hold their representatives accountable at the ballot box.

The United States also remains committed to facilitating a framework agreement on the management of Iraq’s hydrocarbon sector consistent with the Iraqi Constitution.  The Vice President noted the decision by the Kurdistan Regional Government to begin exports through the Iraq-Turkey pipeline pursuant to existing arrangements with the Government of Iraq, pending a more permanent resolution of these difficult issues.  The United States will continue to serve as a neutral broker with all sides as talks accelerate in the coming weeks.