Iraq's Kurdistan Says to Respect Court Decision Banning Secession

Major earthquake kills injures hundreds across Kurdistan

Meanwhile, a member of the Shiite National Iraqi Alliance, Iskandar Vetut, told Anadolu Agency (AA) that Baghdad will not compromise on the conditions of annulment of the "illegal" referendum, handing over border gates to the Iraqi government and withdrawal of peshmerga to the pre-2003 borders.

In a major development which may resolve the issue of a separate homeland for Kurds in Iraq, Kurdistan Regional Government (KRG) has on Tuesday pledged to abide by a recent Supreme Court ruling which bans any secession from the country. Kurdish authorities intend to use it to pressurise Baghdad into starting negotiations and formalise independence.

Russian Foreign Minister Sergi Lavrov after receiving the Iraqi Foreign Minister Ibrahim al-Jaafari, in a press conference on October 23, said that his country was not closing its consulate in the capital of the Kurdistan Region, but that the mission was nevertheless subordinate to the Russian Embassy in Baghdad.

"Baghdad has not responded to Erbil's proposals for dialogue", he said, calling on officials in the central government "to resolve all problems through the constitution". It imposed an "air embargo" on Erbil and Sulaimaniyah, its second city.

The development comes two months after voters in the semi-autonomous region overwhelmingly voted in support of an independence referendum.

Peshmerga fighters had advanced into Kirkuk to counter the Islamic State (Isis) terror group, which seized several areas of the country.

The vote also raised hackles in neighboring Turkey and Iran, which have their own Kurdish minorities.

US President Donald Trump said he would not take any side in the crisis, but called on both parties to find a peaceful solution. Reuters, in one of its analysis had also disclosed that USA was also supportive of a separate Kurdistan in the region.

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