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Turkey Says May Mediate Reconciliation Between Iraq, Kurdistan

The top Turkish diplomat said he would discuss with Iraqi authorities a possible Turkish mediation between Iraq and the Kurdistan region during his visit to Iraq this month.

“There are calls for such mediation. We will discuss this issue as well as bilateral issues,” AFP quoted him as saying.

The Turkish minister did not specify the parties that called for Turkey’s mediation.

Relations between Baghdad and Erbil deteriorated after the Kurdish region held a referendum on separation from Iraq on 25 September where the voters overwhelmingly supported independence. Iraq did not recognize the vote which it said was “illegal” and imposed economic sanctions on its northern territory.

Turkey and Iran, which have large Kurdish communities of their own, also rejected the referendum.

Later in November, Kurdish President, Massoud Barzani announced his resignation after losing a majority of disputed areas with Baghdad, especially those rich in oil that would have provided him with funding for a potential state.

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