September 26TH, 2017
BBC NEWS – Turkey’s president has said Iraqi Kurds could go hungry as a result of the punitive measures it is considering after Monday’s independence referendum.
Recep Tayyip Erdogan accused the head of the Kurdistan Regional Government of “treachery” for pressing ahead with the vote despite international opposition.
Massoud Barzani should now “give up on this adventure”, he said.
Mr Erdogan has previously threatened to cut a vital Kurdish oil pipeline and stop lorries crossing Turkey’s border.
Turkey fears that the emergence of an independent Kurdish state on its border will stoke separatist feeling in its own Kurdish minority.
The results of the referendum are yet to be declared, but a “yes” vote is expected.
Kurdish leaders say that would not automatically trigger a declaration of independence, but rather give them a mandate to start negotiations on secession with the central government in Baghdad and with neighbouring countries.
Iraqi Prime Minister Haider al-Abadi ruled out any such talks on Monday night, saying he would not discuss the referendum’s results because it was “unconstitutional”.