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All foreign flights to Iraq Kurd capital to stop Friday

All foreign flights to Iraq Kurd capital to stop Friday

The United Nations has offered to help "solve the problem" between the Iraqi government and the Kurdistan Regional Government (KRG) over a Kurdish independence referendum held on Monday, the Iraqi foreign ministry has said.

Even the USA asked the Kurds to cancel the vote, which ended up producing a 93 percent "yes" result in favor of separating from Iraq out of a population of 3 million.

The move by a trilateral front consisting of Iran, Iraq and Turkey is aimed at isolating the Kurds following their controversial vote on independence last Monday.

However, after Erdogan said that Iraqi Kurds would go hungry if Ankara halted the cross-border flow of trucks and oil, it has said that any measures it took would not target civilians and instead focus on those who organised the referendum.

Tehran, which strongly opposes independence for Iraq's Kurds, fearing it will provoke separatists among its own Kurdish minority, also announced a joint military exercise with Iraq in response to the referendum.

The Kurdistan Regional Government considered the decision of the Iraqi authorities to suspend flights to the autonomous region as a "collective punishment" and a blockade, according to a statement published on the government's website on Saturday. "The central government's control over border gates and seaports is not aimed at imposing any sort of siege on the Kurds".

More news: Germany on alert after blackmailer threatens to poison food

That's something, at least, since Iraq, Iran, and Turkey all seem to be preparing war against Kurdistan to bring it back under Baghdad's thumb.

In defiance of Baghdad, the self-ruled Kurdish region has been unilaterally exporting crude oil produced in their region and contested areas through Turkey.

"We urge calm and an end to vocal recriminations and threats of reciprocal actions", he added.

The suspension came into force after Kurdistan refused to comply with the order to hand over control of the Erbil and Suleimaniya worldwide airports to the Iraqi federal government, Efe reports.

Iraqi lawmakers yesterday passed a resolution calling on Prime Minister Haider al-Abadi to "take all necessary measures to maintain Iraq's unity" including by deploying security forces to disputed areas.


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