Iran reiterates strong opposition to Iraqi Kurdistan referendum

September 23, 2017 - 20:8

TEHRAN – Iranian Deputy Foreign Minister Abbas Araqchi on Friday insisted on Tehran’s strong opposition against independence referendum in Iraq’s Kurdistan region.

During the annual coordination meeting of the foreign ministers of the Organization of Islamic Cooperation member states, held on the sidelines of the United Nations General Assembly in New York, he said that Iran supports Iraq’s territorial integrity, sovereignty and national unity.

President of Iraqi Kurdistan Massoud Barzani tweeted on June 7 that an independence referendum is scheduled to be held on September 25.

Iraqi Kurds abroad began casting their ballots Saturday for independence referendum. The online vote for Kurdish expatriates is open for three days.

Secretary of Iran’s Supreme National Security Council Ali Shamkhani has said that Tehran only recognizes an “integrated” and “federal” Iraq.

In a meeting last week  with Austrian President Alexander Van de Bellen at the UN, Iranian President Hassan Rouhani said disintegration of the countries in West Asia is a very “dangerous act”.

While all countries are insisting on territorial integrity in Iraq, Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu has expressed interest in partitioning Iraq and establishing an independent Kurdish state during a meeting with a delegation of 33 U.S. Republican congressmen.

NA/PA

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