20 November, Monday


KRG will respect court decision banning secession

Politics

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Iraq's Kurdistan Regional Government (KRG) said on Tuesday it would respect a decision by the country's federal court banning the region's secession.
 
"We believe that this decision must become a basis for starting an inclusive national dialogue between Erbil and Baghdad to resolve all disputes," the KRG said in a statement.
 
Iraq’s Supreme Federal Court ruled last week that Iraq’s constitution does not allow for the secession of any part of the country from the Iraqi state.
 
In a statement, court spokesman Iyas al-Samouk stressed that Iraq’s national charter expressly calls for the preservation of the country’s unity and territorial integrity.
 
Iraq’s federal court is responsible for settling disputes between the central government in Baghdad and the country’s regions and provinces, including northern Iraq’s semi-autonomous Kurdish region.
 
The court’s rulings are final and cannot be contested by higher judicial authorities.
 
Following the verdict, Iraqi Prime Minister Haider al-Abadi’s office called on all parties to “totally abide by the constitution and all Federal Court decisions”.
 
“We call on the region to clearly state its commitment to non-separation or independence [of any province or sub-region] from Iraq,” the statement read.
 
Illegal KRG referendum
 
On Sept. 25, Iraqis in KRG-held areas -- and in several areas disputed between Baghdad and Erbil -- voted on whether to declare independence from Iraq.
 
The illegitimate referendum was heavily criticized by most regional and international actors, with many warning it would distract from Iraq’s ongoing fight against terrorism and further destabilize the already volatile region.
 
Following the illegitimate referendum, Iraqi government forces moved into several parts of the country “disputed” between Baghdad and the Erbil-based KRG, including the oil-rich Kirkuk province.

 

Reuters

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