No: 272, 29 August 2017, Press Release Regarding The Decision Of The Kirkuk Provincial Assembly To Include Kirkuk In The Referendum Of The Krg.

Republic Of Turkey Ministry Of Foreign Affairs 29.08.2017

We had conveyed our views and concerns regarding March 28th and April 4th decisions of the Kirkuk Provincial Council on the status of Kirkuk contrary to the Iraqi constitution, as well as the decision to hold a referendum by the KRG, both to the governments of Iraq and the latter. We also shared our concerns about these decisions with the international community.

During his visit to Iraq on 23 August 2017, H.E. Foreign Minister Çavuşoğlu reiterated once again that the referendum must be backed down, and especially underlined the risks that the attempt to extend the referendum to the disputed territories would carry.

While holding the referendum would already be a mistake in itself, the decision approved today (29 August) by the Kirkuk Provincial Council to include Kirkuk in the referendum has added a new element to the chain of mistakes and as such constituted another severe violation of the Iraqi constitution.

The unacceptable decision of the Kirkuk Provincial Council has been boycotted by the Turkmen and Arab groups, the main constituents of Kirkuk.

On this occasion, we remind that Administrative Court of Baghdad, in its ruling of August 17th, concluded that neither the KRG nor the Kirkuk Provincial Council has authority to make any disposition of the disputed areas.

The persistent continuation of this hazardous line of action will serve the interests of neither Iraq, nor the KRG. It will not be approved by the international community. Last but not least, it will not contribute to the peace and stability of the region at a time when critical developments are unfolding.

Mehmet Vakur Erkul Ambassador
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