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Iraq referendum : Parliament votes to reject poll on Kurdish independence

16 September 2017

The Arab-led central government in Baghdad strongly opposes efforts by the autonomous Kurdistan Region to secede.

"The visiting delegation presented an alternative in place of the holding the referendum on September 25".

Senior Kurdish officials insisted the parliament had no right to do so.

The decision sparked uproar and calls by member of parliaments and politicians to remove Karim from office. Iraqi lawmakers authorized Abadi this week to "take all measures" to preserve national unity before the independence referendum. Turkey has the largest proportion of ethnic Kurds, who make up around a quarter of its population of 80 million.

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"We have made it clear that Turkmen don't want this referendum to be held - neither in Kirkuk nor in other disputed areas", Turan said.

Baqeri has said that any changes in the political geography of Iraq, given the imminent independence referendum of Iraq's autonomous Kurdish region, can start tensions and conflicts inside and outside Iraq.

Turkey also welcomed the Iraqi parliament's decision to reject the KRG independence referendum slated for September 25.

McGurk said the alternative plan was presented to Kurdish President Masoud Barzani by representatives of the USA, the United Nations and the U.K. during a meeting Thursday at the anti-IS coalition's command center in Duhok.

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The official said the USA had also deployed a range of weapons in the base, including missiles, heavy artillery, tanks, armored personnel carriers and over 100 military vehicles. "Kirkuk should be a symbol of coexistence for all ethnicities".

Kurdistan's parliament is expected to convene on Friday to vote on the referendum.

Although American forces were already using the base as an attacking point against Daesh positions, they were ultimately going to use it as a command center to coordinate air and ground operations with the Iraqi armed forces and the Peshmerga in the final battle to free the town of Hawijah, Kalali said.

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Iraq referendum : Parliament votes to reject poll on Kurdish independence