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lakeelmoleader.com October 17, 2017


Israel denies Turkish claim of involvement in Kurd vote

02 October 2017, 12:57 | Kara Nash

Iraq Set To Impose Flight Ban On Kurdistan In Row Over Independence

Deadline approaches for Iraq's Kurds to hand over control airports

Yesterday, the Turkish carriers Turkish Airlines, Atlas and Pegasus suspended their flights to Iraqi Kurdistan for an unspecified period of time.

Ankara fiercely opposed the referendum and has threatened sanctions against the region, reflecting its worries about its own sizeable Kurdish minority.

Baghdad has said only domestic flights will be permitted from 18:00 (15:00 GMT) unless the Kurds hand over control of Irbil and Sulaimaniya airports.

"The Kurdish Regional Government rejects all the decisions taken by the Iraqi government and parliament and regards them as collective punishment against the Kurds", it said after a cabinet meeting in the region's capital Arbil.

A Turkish soldier was killed and three others wounded today in an attack by Kurdish militants in northern Iraq, the Turkish armed forces said.

"A military exercise joint between iranian armed forces and units of the iraqi army will take place in the next few days along the common border", said to journalists the spokesman of the iranian armed forces, Massoud Jazayeri.

Iraq and Iran have turned to economic weapons in retaliation for Iraqi Kurdistan's independence referendum, with Baghdad closing the Kurds' airspace to worldwide flights and Tehran freezing trade in fuels.

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Tehran has been cooperating with Baghdad in building pressure on Iraqi Kurds, notably by cutting all flights to and from the region ahead of the vote.

These countries include Iraq, Iran, Turkey and the United States.

On Friday, it also banned the transportation of refined oil products by Iranian companies to and from Iraqi Kurdistan.

Neither will the ban apply to military or humanitarian flights, the director of the Kurdistan global airport, Talar Faiq, told a press conference.

He stressed that the Kurdish people in Iraq could not enjoy genuine support unless the Arab country's national unity was fully supported. The Iraqi Defence Ministry did not indicate whether Iraqi forces were to move toward the external border posts controlled by the KRG from the Iranian and Turkish side.

"We will enforce federal authority in the Kurdistan region, and we already have starting doing that", Abadi said.



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