Posted on August 23, 2016 by Editorial Staff in Politics
Mala Bakhtiar, a senior Iraqi Kurdish politician and the head of PUK Politburo. Photo: Bakhtiar’s FB
SULAIMANI, Iraq’s Kurdistan region,— Up to 28 international states have informed the Patriotic Union of Kurdistan (PUK) and the Kurdistan Democratic Party (KDP) they do not support the independence of Kurdistan, a senior PUK official said.
The newspaper Chawder released a statement from the head of the PUK Politburo, Mala Bakhtiar, during a seminar with a number of Egyptian university teachers, journalists and political experts who participated through Skype.
Bakhtiar said there is no agreement nor an official letter or decision from the U.S., Russia or other states to establish an independent Kurdish state.
Bakhtiar said the western nations signed an official letter, which was given to the KDP and the PUK, regarding the independence of Kurdistan. The international states stressed the “unity of Iraq,” Bakhtiar said during the seminar.
Last May Bakhtiar said that only Israel and Hungary back an independent Kurdish state, NRT reported
Kurds are often described as the world’s largest ethnic group without their own state, with populations divided among Turkey Iraq, Iran and Syria since after World War I.
Masoud Barzani said on July 25 the Kurdistan Region, facing a war against the Islamic State (IS), had two choices: to accept the status quo or declare independence.
“The first [choice] of which is to accept the status quo where others determine our fate while we march backward,” Barzani said. “The other choice is to make a collective decision and take serious steps towards sovereignty and independence.”
In February, Barzani called for a non-binding referendum on independence from the rest of Iraq, taking advantage of growing international support, especially in light of the ongoing war against IS.
Kurdish leaders are also likely to face opposition from neighboring countries, including the central government in Baghdad.