09:36 GMT +321 October 2018
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    Masoud Barzani, the president of Iraqi Kurdistan.

    Arab League Urges Iraqi Kurds for Dialogue With Central Government

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    The Arab League called on the Iraqi Kurdistan to hold a dialogue with the central government before the September 25 referendum on independence.

    CAIRO (Sputnik) — The League of Arab States (LAS) Secretary-General Ahmed Aboul Gheit on Tuesday called on the Iraqi Kurdistan to hold a dialogue with the government in Baghdad ahead of the planned September 25 referendum on the region's independence.

    In June, Masoud Barzani, the president of Iraqi Kurdistan, set September 25 as the date for an independence referendum. The announced referendum has been widely criticized by a number of countries, including the United States and Iraq.

    On Tuesday, the Iraqi parliament voted against the referendum and instructed the government to take necessary measures to preserve the country's territorial integrity.

    "We need to give dialogue a chance in order to observe the Constitution, in the development of which the Kurdish representatives took part, as well as to preserve the territorial integrity of Iraq," Aboul Gheit said at a regular meeting of the foreign ministers of the Arab League in Cairo.

    According to him, the Arab world would like the Kurds to remain an integral part of society in both Iraq and in Syria.

    Earlier this month, Aboul Gheit visited Iraq, where he met with the country's leadership in Baghdad, and Kurdish leaders in Erbil. The trip ended in Gheit noting the lack of trust between the parties, and also expressed concern about the possible negative consequences of the referendum in Iraqi Kurdistan.


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