Abadi Says Iraq Won’t Cut Relation with Kurdistan Region

Abadi Says Iraq Won’t Cut Relation with Kurdistan Region

 Iraqi Prime Minister Haider al-Abadi said Iraq will not cut its relation with the Kurdistan Region but reiterated that the Kurdish referendum for independence was unconstitutional.

Speaking to reporters on Tuesday (October 10), Abadi rejects dialogue with the Kurdish authorities before canceling the results of the referendum.

“Any dialogue with the Kurdistan Region should be based on three principles which are Iraq’s unity, the constitution and the rejection of referendum,” Abadi said during his press briefing in Baghdad.

However, Masoud Barzani on Tuesday reiterated Kurdistan Region’s willingness to engage in dialogue with Baghdad without precondition and with an open agenda.

Kurds overwhelmingly backed independence in a referendum on September 25, defying neighboring countries who fear the vote could lead to renewed conflict in the region.

The latest feud between Erbil and Baghdad stems after the Kurds held the referendum despite Baghdad’s warning to take measures against the region.

The Iraqi Parliament on September 27 imposed several sanctions over the Kurdistan Region including a ban on international flights to and from the Kurdistan Region.

International flights have been suspended since 6 p.m. on Friday (September 29). Travelers who intend to fly to the Kurdistan Region have to first fly to another Iraqi international airport and then fly to the region’s airports in Erbil or Sulaimani by domestic flights.

The Iraqi Parliament asked Prime Minister Haider al-Abadi to deploy troops in Kirkuk and other disputed areas. Parliament has also ruled that the Iraqi government must attempt to convince its neighboring countries to close their borders and to request the international community to close their consulates and representative offices in the Kurdistan region.