Barzani threatens Iraq gov't with Kurdish referendum

Iraqi Kurdish president Masoud Barzani threatened to hold an independence referendum if Baghdad does not respond to his demands.

Barzani threatens Iraq gov't with Kurdish referendum

World Bulletin / News Desk

The president of the autonomous Kurdish Regional Government (KRG) of northern Iraq, Masoud Barzani, has warned the central government in Baghdad that if they do not accept his demands, his people would hold a referendum to determine their own future.

Explaining the details of his meeting with Italian Foreign Minister Federica Mogherini in Rome in a statement on the KRG's official website, the statement also claimed that the KRG will soon enter negotiations with Baghdad to pave the way for all Kurdish parties to play a role in the central government.

"The constitutional and legitimate rights cannot be put on hold," the statement read, saying that Barzani was not prepared to wait any longer for Baghdad to respond.

The statement also boasted that during the meeting in Italy, a Kurdistan flag was flown for the first time alongside the flags of Iraq, Italy and the US.

Iraqi Kurds claim that according to agreements the position of president has specifically been assigned to their ethnic group, and insist on retaining the position after current president Jalal Talabani's term is over.

The Erbil-based KRG authorities also demand that Baghdad releases to them the 17% revenues from oil exported from northern Iraq according to schedule along with the wages of the Kurdish armed forces.

The KRG, which complains of breaches on Kurdish rights in the Iraq 2014 budget plan, recently started exporting their own oil directly through neighbor Turkey without Baghdad's permission.

Last Mod: 31 Mayıs 2014, 17:46
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