Saturday, July 5, 2014

Barzani determined to hold referendum about Kurdish independence

Kurdish president Massoud Barzani Thursday called on the Kurdish parliament to set a date for the autonomous region's independence vote,  despite Iraqi leadership's discouragement earlier this week, according to Al Arabiya News. Barzani also called on the Kurdish Regional Government "to form an independent electoral commission to carry out a referendum in the Kurdistan region and determine the way forward."
Barzani blames the current crisis in Iraq as the handiwork of Iraq's PM Maliki (File Archive/AFP)
At the same time Barzani said that Kurdistan's Peshmerga forces would maintain their presence in the disputed areas of Kirkuk, Nineveh and Diyalah that have fallen outside the control of Baghdad over the past month.
Iraq's Prime Minister Nouri Al Maliki had sharply criticized the Kurdish plans.
On Wednesday he said that an  indenpence referendum would be "unconstitutional", adding that Kurdistan is a part of Iraq and he warned the Kurdistan Regional Government that its attempt to hold an independence vote will “damage them a lot.” He emphasized that the KRG is part of Iraq and said that ''no one has the right to exploit the events that took place to impose a fait accompli, as happened in some of the actions of the Kurdistan region. his is rejected,” Al Maliki said in a televised address, adding that no one is allowed to take advantage of the current crisis in order to reap their own benefits.
Barzani, however., has described the current crisis in Iraq as the handiwork of Maliki. “We warned Maliki six months ago about what's happening but he did not listen and these are the consequences. What we see today on the ground is due to the failure of Maliki's policy in Iraq,” Barzani told Kurdish lawmakers.

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