(The independent newspaper) a looming vote by northern Iraq’s semi-autonomous Kurdish region, setting the stage for the possible secession of the region from the country, is illegal in terms of the country’s constitution, a top Iraqi diplomat said Sunday.
The planned independence referendum vote, called by the Kurdistan Regional Government (KRG) and slated for September, has put the Kurdish region’s capital of Erbil on “a full road of danger,” Iraqi Ambassador to Iran Rajeh Saber Abboud al-Moussavi told Iranian state-run news outlet Mehr News.
“The Iraqi constitution, which 10 years ago spoke to Iraqis and aroused the satisfaction of all, including the Kurds and the Arabs, guarantees the unity of Iraq, and everyone should abide by this law. The referendum is clearly against the law,” Mr. al-Moussavi said.
Officials in Kurdistan and their representatives in Washington say Erbil’s massive contribution to the fight against ISIS in Iraq has placed the semi-autonomous region in a perfect political position to push for independence.
Government leaders in Erbil pushed for the vote, in part, as a way to persuade Baghdad to provide much needed services and supplies to the northern Iraqi territory as outlined in the constitution. Tons of food, fuel, medical supplies and other material from the central government, promised under the constitution, have yet to make it across KRG borders.