SOUTH KURDISTAN (IRAQ) –  18 July 2017 – KURDPRESS – Referendum would Isolate Iraqi Kurds: Iranian official

Secretary of Iran’s Supreme National Security Council Ali Shamkhani said on Monday that holding referendum in the Iraqi Kurdistan region will isolate and increase pressure on the Kurds living in the region.

Shamkhani said in Monday, July 17, meeting with the First Deputy Secretary General of the Patriotic Union of Kurdistan Kosrat Rasul and Chief of Executive Body of Iraq’s Patriotic Union of Kurdistan (PUK) Mala Bakhtiar that although the referendum appears attractive but in fact it will lead to isolation of Iraqi Kurds and pressure on them and in the meantime will result in weakening of Kurdistan and the whole country.

According to IRNA he noted that victory over Daesh and liberation of Mosul promises a better future for the unified Iraq and foiling foreign plots which planned to divide the country.Stable, safe and united Iraq can guarantee sustainability, stability and progress of the country and the friend countries should support the approach, Shamkhani noted.He said that pursuing the issue of holding referendum and causing a rift among Iraqi nation will not afford the Iraqi people’s needs and is not compatible with the Iraqi officials’ policies.

Shamkhani said certain regional and international countries in the region seek to weaken Iraq and big countries in the West Asian region, noting that regional people should be vigilant towards their national interests and the interests of Islamic World and prevent execution of colonial plots like the ‘Great Middle East’ project.Shamkhani underlined that Iran wishes security, economic development and welfare for the Iraqi people which in fact can impede growth of terrorist groups in the region.

Rasul, for his part, thanked Iran’s support for Iraqi Kurds and noted there are historical links between the Iranian nation and the Iraqi Kurds, the report added.He pointed to Iran’s decisive support for the Iraqi Kurdistan region and said Iran was the only county to prevent eruption of a security catastrophe in Iraqi Kurdistan while the terrorists of the Islamic State (IS) were approaching the region’s capital, Erbil. Kurdistan Region president Massoud Barzani and some parties in the region, including the PUK, decided in a June 7 meeting that the region would hold a referendum of independence on September 25. The PUK and the Movement for Change (Gorran) and the Kurdistan Islamic Group (KIG) have demanded for the reactivation of the local parliament of the region before the referendum is held. They have reiterated that the plan to hold the referendum should be confirmed by the legislative body.

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