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Iran Press TV

Independence vote divides Kurdish groups: Iran official

Iran Press TV

Tue Sep 12, 2017 4:46PM

Secretary of Iran's Supreme National Security Council (SNSC) Ali Shamkhani has warned that a referendum on the independence of Iraq's semi-autonomous Kurdistan region will divide Kurdish groups and political parties.

"Holding a referendum in the [Iraqi] Kurdistan region can exacerbate the existing divisions among Kurdish parties and groups," Shamkhani told reporters on Tuesday.

He added that the independence referendum would result in the loss of numerous and effective opportunities and potentialities of the Kurds in Iraq.

With regard to the negative impacts of the independence vote on Iraq's security, Shamkhani said at a time when Iraq is getting close to the final phase of its fight against Takfiri terrorists, certain "injudicious measures can increase the risk of the emergence of new conflicts and regenerate insecurity."

Six Iraqi unions are set to take legal action against the government of the semi-autonomous Kurdistan region over the independence referendum due this month.

The Lawyers' Union, Engineering Union, Union of Journalists, Doctors' Union, Teacher's Union and Workers' Union, in a joint statement released on Tuesday, announced that they would file a lawsuit against the Kurdistan Regional Government (KRG) over plans to hold the referendum.

They underlined that the forthcoming vote "lacks any legal or constitutional basis."

The Iraqi parliament voted on Tuesday to reject a Kurdish independence referendum, requiring Prime Minister Haider al-Abadi and the central government in Baghdad to "take all steps to protect the unity of Iraq and open a serious dialogue" with Kurdish leaders.

The decision prompted a walkout by Kurdish lawmakers.

The Kurdish referendum is scheduled for September 25, but the central government in Baghdad is opposed to the vote.



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