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Turkey's National Security Council debates Iraqi Kurdistan referendum

Turkey's National Security Council debates Iraqi Kurdistan referendum

Turkey's National Security Council debates Iraqi Kurdistan referendum

The UN Security Council has warned of the potentially destabilising impact of a planned referendum on independence for the Kurdistan Region of Iraq.

The President of Iraq's Kurdish region said that the controversial referendum on support for independence will go forward Monday, despite increasingly urgent calls from the global community to delay the vote.

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During a campaign stop in the regional capital of Irbil on Friday, Barzani said it was too late to cancel the vote.

"The same people who are threatening us have not come to ask why we are holding a referendum", Barzani said, according to a report from Kurdish news portal Rudaw.

The statement released after the meeting at the General Staff headquarters said the generals discussed the KRG referendum and other developments which are threatening the stability in the region.

Neighboring Iran and Turkey also oppose the referendum fearing such a vote will further separatist movements among large Kurdish minorities in their own countries that could lead to an independent Kurdistan carved out across Turkey, Iraq, Iran and Syria.

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Speaking on behalf of the KRG delegation, Roj Nuri Shaways said they expressed Erbil's determination to hold the referendum, but they could not agree on this with the central government in Baghdad.

Nevertheless, Kurdistan Regional Government (KRG) leader Masoud Barzani says there is no turning back.

Iraqi lawmakers have voted against the independence referendum and called on the Baghdad government to negotiate with the Kurds.

The UN Security Council's vote is meant to reflect fears of nations across the world that, if the right to self-determination becomes commonplace, they'll lose territory.

That arrangement left 30 million Kurds scattered over Iran, Turkey, Syria and Iraq.

They have established Kurdish-controlled autonomous regions in both Iraq and northern Syria.

Turkey, which has developed close commercial and political ties with the region, especially in the area of energy, has also threatened to impose sanctions.

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