KRG referendum to lead region to war: Former Iraqi MP

Courtesy Yeni Safak-

The non-binding referendum of the Kurdish Regional Government (KRG) on whether to declare independence from Baghdad slated for Sept. 25 carries great significance for millions of Arabs, Turkmens and Kurds in Iraq and Syria.

A former Iraqi Member of Parliament, Feyha Bayatlı, told Yeni Şafak that a great danger was waiting for the region after the referendum.


“If Barzani is not stopped, the new and large-scale war that will swallow the whole region will be inevitable. If this initiative succeeds, the geography and the destiny of nations will change,” Bayatlı said.

Bayatli served in parliament when the Iraqi constitution was amended between 2005 and 2006. She said that the 36th parallel and Operation Sledgehammer, initiated by the U.S., were the beginnings of KRG President Masoud Barzani’s Kurdish state project.


The former deputy added that Kirkuk, Mosul, Dahuk, and Erbil were part of a population ploy that was launched in 1991 in preparation for today. Bayatlı said that the same ploy was applied in Raqqa, al-Hasakah and Aleppo’s north.

“Iraq’s richest oil and natural gas reserves were seized by Barzani, who refuses to pay the central government of Iraq the necessary payment from oil revenues. Barzani also continued to receive the Peshmerga salary from the Iraqi state,” said Bayatli.

She expressed that Barzani was able to declare autonomy with the courage of the forces behind him.


The former Iraqi MP, who was a member of the delegation who penned the Syrian Constitution, told Yeni Şafak, “Barzani and his partners planned a Mediterranean corridor from Kirkuk, Erbil, al-Hasakah and Idlib as an alternative door to export oil to the outside world.”


The connection between Afrin, al-Hasakah, Afrin and Lattakia was severed by Turkey’s Operation Euphrates Shield.

Bayatlı said that although the objections raised by the Kurdish public are not openly expressed, it is due to the fact that the administration made an early announcement because conditions were not in place. Iraqi and Syrian Kurds in general are convinced about the great Kurdistan, she added.


Taken in 1971, this photograph reveals how deeply the relations between Israeli intelligence Mossad and Massoud Barzani. Barzani is seen standing alongside Mossad’s president and vice president, proving that Israel and the U.S. were included in the planning with Barzani’s Sept. 25 referendum for a garrison state map.

This map will be the greatest cause of destruction for the region after Israel. The attack and dismantling plans for almost all countries will be managed from this region.


The former Iraqi parliamentarian Bayatlı emphasized that this so-called state will not be recognized by regional actors and that there will be no connection channel with the world when the Turkish government closes the border with Habur.

Bayatlı also said that the role of Ankara in this process is vital as the oil from northern Iraq is exported through Turkey.


Following the Turkmen in Kirkuk, Arab political parties also announced that they rejected the KRG referendum. Turkmen political parties rejected the referendum and stated that they would not recognize the results, as well as calling for a boycott.

Iraqi lawmakers on Tuesday voted against the Kurdish independence referendum and called on the Baghdad government to negotiate with the semi-autonomous Kurdish government.

“Parliament obliged Prime Minister Haider Abadi to take all measures that preserve the unity of Iraq and start a dialogue to address the related problems between Baghdad and Erbil,” lawmaker Ali al-Safi said, referring to the capital of northern Iraq’s Kurdish region.

Turkey, too, rejects the planned referendum, saying the region’s stability depends on the unity of Iraq and the maintenance of its territorial integrity.

Washington has likewise voiced concern that the poll could serve as a “distraction” from other pressing regional issues, especially the fight against terrorism and the stabilization of post-Daesh Iraq.


Arab Parliamentarian Khalid Muferci read a joint statement against the referendum behalf of the Arab political parties at a press conference in Kirkuk.

“We will not recognize the outcome of the referendum and we regard it as a partisan approach without legitimacy,” he said, adding that the referendum would constitute the beginning of the division of Iraq.


Kirkuk Foundation President Erşat Hürmüzlü said that after the referendum, a difficult period is awaiting Iraq. Hürmüzlü pointed out that the door to developments that will impact the country’s integrity will be opened, and that “Iraq will wake up in chaos on Sept. 26.”

“America positioned 300,000 to 400,000 Kurds in Kirkuk after 2003 in preparation for today’s developments. According to the Iraqi Constitution, the Kurdish region in northern Iraq includes three provinces, which we refer to as the green line. Erbil, Dahuk and Sulaimaniya. This constitution was formed by Shiite groups in America’s patronage. Kirkuk is a controversial region for this constitution. Despite the opposition of the Turkmens, Kirkuk pushed to illegally hold the referendum. This is against the law of Kirkuk. Impositions are being enforced,” said Hürmüzlü.


“A referendum is to be held on Sept. 25. But what’s really important is what the situation will be on Sept. 26. We are afraid of a great conflict. The Turkmens do not consent and want to defend themselves. Such moves have already begun,” he added.

Lawmakers on Tuesday voted against the Kurdish independence referendum and called on the Baghdad government to negotiate with the semi-autonomous Kurdish government.A parliamentary majority in Baghdad voted in opposition to the Sept. 25 referendum planned by the Kurdish Regional Government (KRG).“Parliament obliged Prime Minister Haider Abadi to take all measures that preserve the unity of Iraq and start a dialogue to address the related problems between Baghdad and Erbil,” lawmaker Ali al-Safi said, referring to the capital of northern Iraq’s Kurdish region.The vote prompted Kurdish lawmakers to walk out of the session, which was attended by 204 of parliament’s 328 members.The non-binding referendum will see residents in provinces controlled by the KRG vote on independence from Baghdad.The Iraqi government is opposed to the poll, claiming it will affect the war against Daesh, cause instability and violate the Iraqi constitution. Turkey and the U.S. are also opposed to the vote.


An agreement was signed in 1926 between Turkey and Britain for Turkey to yield its claims to parts of northern Iraq, Turkish territory that was home to one million ethnic Turks.

“Turkey fulfilled its commitments under the 1926 Ankara agreement. The referendum is a matter of fulfilling Iraq’s commitment. The government has promised that this will not change. If there is a referendum, Iraq will not fulfill its commitment. Perhaps the Ankara Agreement will have to be discussed again,” Hürmüzlü said.


“Yezidis in Sinjar are in majority. They also seem to be in favor of being connected to Kurdistan. It would not be surprising for Sinjar to also participate in the referendum. My greatest fear is that they will make Tal Afar, which is comprised 95 percent of Turkmens, like Sinjar. Peshmerga will enter Tal Afar and they will claim it is Kurdish. The main issue is if Mosul’s western side is connected to Sinjar, Tal Afar and Syria’s Qamishli, Kobani, Idlib and Afrin to open up to the Mediterranean. They want to unite the cantons. Therefore, Turkmens of Tal Afar must return there immediately and the city must be rebuilt. What happened in Iraq will happen in Syria,” Hürmüzlü said.

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