World

Kurdish referendum results should be annulled

Kurdish referendum results should be annulled

After the Kurds staged a referendum on independence last month, Abadi responded by sending his troops to swiftly seize territory from Kurdish forces.

The Kurdistan Regional Government (KRG) proposed on Wednesday an immediate ceasefire, a suspension of the referendum result and "starting an open dialogue with the federal government based on the Iraqi constitution".

"After the referendum and changes within the Kurdistan region our borders with the Kurdistan region of Iraq were closed".

Iraqi authorities did not confirm this account of fighting.

Abadi has been deeply defensive of his government's close alliance with neighbouring Iran, which like Iraq is a Shiite-majority country. He said it was not clear when the other borders points between Iran and Iraq's Kurdish region would reopen.

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"Unity was the most important factor in your gains against terrorists and their supporters", Khamenei told the visiting Prime Minister Haidar al-Abadi, according to state TV. Abadi's office issued a statement saying no country should give orders to Iraq and calling the paramilitaries "patriots".

The Kurdish crisis has broken out even as Iraq is about to finally defeat the Daesh terror group after a three-year war in which it received strong backing from a US-led coalition, the Kurds and Iran.

In the meeting attended also by First VP Es'hagh Jahangiri, the Iraqi prime minister, referring to the efforts of the Iraqi people to maintain the unity and territorial integrity of their country, said "we will safeguard the unity and integrity of Iraq and, as before we said to our brothers in Kurdistan Region, we will never allow the country to be threatened with disintegration".

Iran backs the Shi'ite-led central government in Baghdad in opposing the Kurdish bid for independence, and Iranian-backed militias assisted government forces in retaking control parts of the oil-rich Kirkuk province from Kurdish Peshmerga forces last week.


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