Iraq: Kurds Overwhelmingly Vote for Independence

Iraqi Kurdistan and the Disputed Areas Photo: Wikimedia Commons
Iraqi Kurdistan and the Disputed Areas Photo: Wikimedia Commons

Kurdish referendum has been of great concern in Iraq, Iran and Turkey’s border areas. The Iraqi Kurds hold a referendum on September 25. Over 92% of the Kurdish people overwhelmingly voted “Yes”. It means the Kurdish people have opted for independence.

The central government of Iraq has been a fervent opponent of Kurdish independence referendum. Baghdad has repeatedly threatened of air and land blockades over the Kurdish region.

The Kurdish Regional Government (KRG) leader Masoud Barzani said that the vote will now open the door of negotiations. It will not lead the region to immediately declare independence.

The Prime Minister of Iraq Haider al-Abadi has refused to participate in any talks with the Kurdish leaders on the basis of the referendum result. He said declared the referendum illegal and vowed that the referendum is to be annulled.

 “The referendum must be annulled and dialogue initiated in the framework of the constitution. We will never hold talks based on the results of the referendum,” the Iraqi PM said.

“We will impose Iraqi law in the entire region of Kurdistan under the constitution,” he added.

The central government in Baghdad is to send troops to the disputed areas between the Kurds and Arabs as well.

The government in Baghdad has advised the Kurdish authority to hand over the airports in Kurdish region to the central command by Friday or the government will impose a blockade on the region.

The Kurdish referendum has scared Turkey. The Turkish president warned of a ‘sectarian and ethnic war’ after the resolute Iraqi Kurds hold the referendum anyway.

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