World Bulletin / News Desk
The head of Kirkuk election commission said the central government in Baghdad has not yet taken a decision to hold a referendum on the independence of the northern city of Kirkuk.
"No preparations have been made for the referendum as there were no instructions from Baghdad to do so," Qais Muhammad said on Monday.
He said his commission was now focusing on the parliamentary election, which is set to be held in April.
"More than half of our preparations have been completed so far," he added.
At a June 7 meeting with the Kurdish parliament, Iraq's Kurdish region president Masoud Barzani announced that the region will hold an independence referendum on Sept. 25.
During and after the U.S.-led invasion of Iraq in 2003, Kurdish Peshmerga forces seized Kirkuk, prompting an influx of Kurds into the ethnically-diverse city.
Kirkuk’s population has historically been comprised mainly of Arabs, Turkmen and Kurds.
When Kirkuk’s provincial council decided to hold a referendum on the disputed city’s future in April, the council session was boycotted by Arab and Turkmen representatives.
200 Turkish students visit several African countries as part of exchange program
Bavarian state premier Horst Seehofer, head of the conservative CSU party, had openly clashed with Merkel at the height of the mass migrant and refugee influx in 2015.
Officials, who are presently in Saudi Arabia, are instructed to return to country
However Mattis appeared satisfied after what he described as an in-depth review of the policy by much of the president's cabinet and top security officials at Camp David on Friday.
Another eight people were wounded in the stabbing spree, which took place on Friday in the southwestern port city of Turku.
A coalition led by President Hashim Thaci's PDK party -- itself in power since 2007 -- topped early parliamentary polls held on June 11, but the alliance did not win the absolute majority needed to govern alone.
According to the Italian media, an extra 50 police carrying portable scanners were on duty to carry out checks on the 10,000 people who were in St Peter's square Sunday for Pope Francis's weekly Angelus prayer.
Barzani says postponement of Kurdish referendum on independence 'unlikely'
The president had flown to South Africa on Wednesday to attend a two-day regional leaders' summit in Pretoria that began Saturday -- which police said she had been expected to attend.
Local media says 3 armed men were reportedly spotted on Paris-Nimes train
Opposition protesters call for change in country's constitution, want term limits
Police said they had cast a dragnet for 22-year-old Younes Abouyaaqoub, who media reports say was the driver of a van that smashed into people on Barcelona's busy Las Ramblas boulevard on Thursday.
In perhaps the worst to date, he dealt a crushing blow to his own embattled administration by saying "both sides" were to blame for the bloodshed in Charlottesville, Virginia following a rally by neo-Nazis and white supremacists.
A so-called "free speech" rally by far-right groups had been scheduled to run until 2 pm (1800 GMT), but a half-hour before that police escorted its participants -- whose numbers appeared to be in the dozens -- to safety past a throng of anti-racism protesters.
Comments appearing to trivialize racial hatred have president isolated, even within own party
The accident happened late Friday when around 650 people were celebrating inside the tent in Sankt Johann am Walde in the north of the country.