Abadi: no estrangement with Kurdistan, referendum remains rejected

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Iraqi Prime Minister Haider al-Abadi said Tuesday that the current dispute with Kurdistan Region over the latter’s referendum on independence will not lead to a severance of relations, but reiterated the unconstitutionality of the poll.

“There shall be no estrangement with Kurdistan,” the prime minister said in his weekly press briefing in Baghdad. He, however, reiterated his rejection of any dialgoue with Kurdish authorities before abrogating the results of the poll.

Kurdistan region said last month 92% of voters, with a turnout of nearly 73%, backed independence from Iraq during the poll held on 25th.

According to Abadi, “Any dialogue should be based on Iraq’s unity, the constitution and the rejection of the referendum”.

Kurdish authorities have recently expressed readiness for dialogue but without prior conditions.

The referendum has been widely disapproved by major world powers, including the United Nations, the European Union, the United States, Turkey and Iran.

Abadi, during his briefing, again urged Kurdish Peshmerga fighters not to clash with government forces once they take over the responsibility of security at areas where both governments dispute sovereignty. The Iraqi parliament had ordered the government to retake control over security at those areas, most notably oil-rich Kirkuk.

Source: Iraqi News

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