TEHRAN (Press Shia) – Iranian First Vice-President Eshaq Jahangiri praised recent talks among the top officials of the Islamic Republic, Iraq and Turkey about the independence referendum in Iraq’s Kurdistan Region as “useful”, and called for continued efforts to manage developments after the referendum.
“Our consultations in Baghdad is continuing and we make efforts so that developments would be managed following the referendum,” Jahangiri said in a telephone conversation with Turkish Prime Minister Binali Yildirim on Thursday evening.
The base should be the Iraqi parliament’s legislation, the Constitution, and decisions taken by the central government in the Arab country, he said, adding, “We should strongly support Baghdad in managing the situation.”
“We should not allow the international boundaries to be distorted and we should fully support the territorial integrities of Iraq and Syria,” the Iranian first vice-president noted.
The Turkish premier, for his part, denounced the Kurdish independence referendum as “a strategic mistake” and said the issue, which has its roots in the excessive demands of some individuals, has undermined tranquility in the region.
The Iraqi Kurdistan Region went ahead with its plan to hold the referendum on Monday while Iraq’s neighbors and countries in the Middle East, including Iran and Turkey, had voiced opposition to such a move and supported the Baghdad central government.
On Monday night, thousands of Kurdish people in favor of KRG’s secession from Iraq took to the streets in Erbil, with some waving Israeli flags to celebrate.
Israel’s Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu was the only leader in the region to endorse the referendum, while all neighbors have warned that the secession plan would bring instability to the region and disintegrate Iraq.