UN Calls for Dialogue between Erbil, Baghdad Over the Fate of Kurdistan

New York, Erbil – UN Secretary General Special Representative for Iraq Jan Kubis called on Baghdad and Erbil to hold talks over the future of Iraq’s Kurdistan region.

Addressing a Security Council session on the situation in Iraq, Kubis said: “We urge Baghdad and Erbil to engage in a dialogue over the fate of Kurdistan.”

He also urged the Iraqi and Kurdish governments to implement Article 140 pertaining to the disputed areas, Rudaw news agency reported.

Article 140 of the Iraqi Constitution calls for normalization of areas it refers to as disputed, to be followed by a referendum on whether or not those regions want to be part of the Kurdistan Region.

Meanwhile, the Kurdistan Democratic Party (KDP) bloc in the Iraqi parliament denounced on Monday statements by Iranian Chief of Staff Mohammad Baqeri, in which he expressed his country’s rejection of the Kurdish independence referendum, which is scheduled for September 25.

The bloc stressed that Iran had no right to reject or object to the referendum.

In remarks to Asharq Al-Awsat newspaper, the head of the bloc, Arafat Karim, said: “Our message to Iran is that the Kurdistan region, during these long years, was a factor of stability in the region. If it becomes an independent state, this country will be more influential in the region’s stability and security.”

Stressing that Tehran should not stand in the way of the referendum, Karim noted that the Kurds have always extended their hands for peace and coexistence, love and brotherhood, to the world and especially to the countries of the region, and did not interfere in their internal affairs.

Also on Monday, a delegation of the Patriotic Union of Kurdistan (PUK) held consultations with the Secretary of the Supreme National Security Council, Ali Shamkhani.

Shamkhani warned of holding a referendum in Iraqi Kurdistan and said that it would cause “the isolation of the Kurds and weaken the role of the Kurdish province and Iraq”.

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