Turkey criticizes official use of Iraqi Kurdish flag in Kirkuk
The Turkish Foreign Ministry has criticized the Kirkuk governorate’s decision to fly the Iraqi Kurdistan Regional Government’s (KRG) flag on state buildings on official state days.
“The Kirkuk Governorate’s request from the Kirkuk Provincial Council for a motion to raise the KRG flag beside the flag of Iraq throughout official buildings is disconcerting,” said ministry spokesperson Hüseyin Müftüoğlu in a written statement on March 19.
The ministry recalled that the Iraqi constitution determined the process about disputed local administrative borders.
“Before putting this process into practice, taking one-sided decisions on Kirkuk’s status may harm the efforts of stability and consensus-building in Iraq,” read the statement.
The ministry also warned that “these types of initiatives carry the risk of eroding the multicultural identity of Kirkuk.”
On March 16, Kirkuk province decided to use the KRG flag along with the Iraqi national flag in governmental institutions. It also decided to use the Kurdish language in official letters alongside Arabic.