Turkey says Iraqi Kurds' independence referendum will bring nothing but more instability
ANKARATurkey has reiterated its concerns over Iraqi Kurdistan Regional Government’s (KRG) plans to hold a referendum for the future of the semi-autonomous region on Sept. 25, saying that it will bring nothing but more instability to the already messy region.
“We know that the independence referendum in northern Iraq will bring nothing but more instability and will increase the turmoil in the shattered region with so many unresolved problems,” Deputy Prime Minister Numan Kurtulmuş told reporters after a weekly cabinet meeting on June 12.
“Therefore I am of the opinion that the leaders in northern Iraq and all political leaders in our region should better think 10 times before taking a step on all issues,” Kurtulmuş said.
Kurtulmuş stressed that Turkey has long been enjoying very good ties with the KRG but the Turkish government’s main policy is to protect territorial integrity of Iraq in a bid not to escalate ethnic and sectarian tension in the region.
KRG announced Sept. 25 as the date for a referendum in which Iraqi Kurds will be asked whether they want to run their own independent state. The United States and many regional governments expressed their opposition to the referendum decision of the KRG.