(MENAFN) Despite the fact of dispute over the amount, for the first time since 2014, Iraq decided to pay the salaries of state employees in the Kurdish region on Monday, the Baghdad government said.
Monday's agreement represents a step towards normalizing relations between the central government and the autonomous Kurdish region, which held a vote for independence last year that the central government swiftly crushed.
Under the constitution, the Kurdish region is entitled to a share of the national budget. But that arrangement collapsed in 2014, when Iraq's army fled the north in the face of an advance by ISIS militants.
Following that, the Kurds took control of Iraq's main northern oilfields at Kirkuk from ISIL and began selling Kirkuk's oil independently; Baghdad stopped sending money to the Kurds.