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Iraqi PM Abadi meets Erdogan for talks on Kurd vote

26 October 2017

Iraq has rejected an offer from Kurdish leaders to "freeze" its fight for independence and demanded that it be annulled.

"The legions of the heroic based towards the last hideout of terrorism in Iraq in order to liberate al-Qaïm, Rawa and the villages and hamlets in the west ofal-Anbar", announced Prime minister Haider al-Abadi.

The crossing has been closed to traffic since mid-2014, when Kurdish Peshmerga forces loyal to northern Iraq's Kurdish Regional Government (KRG) captured the area from the Daesh terrorist group. Iraqi Oil Minister Jabbar al-Luaibi said he was frustrated with announcements of intent to sign oil contracts inside the "geographic borders of Iraq without telling the federal government of the ministry of oil".

"As Iraq and Kurdistan are faced with grave and risky circumstances, we are all obliged to act responsibly in order to prevent further violence and clashes between Iraqi and Peshmerga forces", KRG said, in a statement.

It concluded by calling for an immediate cease-fire and a halt to all military operations in the region and urged dialogue between the autonomous region and the Iraqi central government.

Ali al-Alaq said that freezing the result would create a "time bomb" that the Kurdistan Region "could throw at the central government whenever it wishes".

On Tuesday, Amnesty International said it had been told by displaced residents of the town of Tuz Khurmatu, south of Kirkuk, that members of the Popular Mobilisation and ethnic Turkmen fighters had looted, set on fire and destroyed hundreds of properties in predominantly Kurdish areas.

"We are determined to continue the common struggle (against the PKK)", Erdogan said.

Iraqi PM Abadi meets Erdogan for talks on Kurd vote