18 October 2017
AsiaNews.it Twitter AsiaNews.it Facebook
Geographic areas




  • > Africa
  • > Central Asia
  • > Europe
  • > Middle East
  • > Nord America
  • > North Asia
  • > South Asia
  • > South East Asia
  • > South West Asia
  • > Sud America
  • > East Asia


  • » 09/18/2017, 19.59

    UNITED NATIONS – IRAQ

    UN and Iran oppose Kurdistan referendum, Israel supports it



    The United Nations Secretary-General comes out against the vote, saying it weakens the fight against the Islamic State. Iran is ready to close the border in case of independence. Rhetoric notwithstanding, Barzani’s move is designed to keep himself in power. Israel backs Kurdistan, sending a message to the United States and Turkey.

    Erbil (AsiaNews) – International opposition to the 25 September referendum on independence in Iraqi Kurdistan set for 25 September is getting stronger. After Europe, the United States and Turkey, Iran and the United Nations have criticised the possibility of secession. Only Israel has expressed support for a Kurdish state for economic, political and strategic reasons.

    UN Secretary-General Antonio Guterres yesterday criticised Kurdish leaders for the pro-independence vote arguing that it would detract from the fight against the Islamic State group.

    UN spokesman Stephane Dujarric said that Guterres “considers that all outstanding issues between the federal Government and the Kurdistan Regional Government should be resolved through structured dialogue and constructive compromise.”

    Iran also waded into the controversy with strong words, saying that it was ready to close the border with the Kurdistan Region and stop all the cooperation and security agreements if independence is proclaimed.

    “Iran definitely recognizes only the united, integrated and federal government of Iraq,” said Ali Shamkhani, secretary general of the Iranian national security council.

    Recent military and economic cooperation between Tehran and Erbil, based on Iranian logistical support to Kurdish forces (Peshmerga) against the Islamic State, proved essential in defeating the latter. Now, Shamkhani warned that Iran would end its current military and security agreements with Erbil.

    If regional and world powers remain opposed to the referendum, Kurdistan experts believe that the referendum is just a political tool to put pressure on Baghdad.

    For them Massud Barzani is using the referendum as leverage or pressure to end disputes with the Iraqi government over, among other things, Kirkuk and oil fields.

    Barzani might also be using the referendum to maintain power, two years from the end of his term in office as president.

    The issue is not whether the referendum will pass, but rather the turnout. If it doesn't reach 70 per cent, the poll will be a failure, some Kurdish officials said.  In fact, not everyone in Iraqi Kurdistan supports the vote, especially among the current government's political rivals.

    Against this backdrop, Israel is alone in openly supporting Kurdish independence. Many factors explain this support. Under its first prime Minister, David Ben Gurion, Israel developed a foreign policy doctrine based on an “alliance of the periphery”, i.e. close strategic ties with non-Arab Muslim states in the Middle East as well as an “alliance of minorities", namely the Kurds and Drue.

    Diplomatically, a Sunni but non-Arab entity could be a "bridge" used by Israel to interact with other regional states, some of which are openly hostile to the Jewish State.

    An additional factor is economics. Kurdistan supplies 75 per cent of Israel’s oil, and is the recipient of Israeli investments in military, communication, infrastructure and energy fields.

    Finally, by its support to the Kurdish cause, Israel is sending a message to the United States and Turkey, telling the first that its alliance with the Kurds is a way to stop Iran, and warning the second that its support for Hamas could be costly, and that the recent Israeli-Turkish rapprochement remains fragile and stormy.

    e-mail this to a friend Printable version










    See also



    Editor's choices

    MYANMAR
    Rohingya not only group persecuted in Myanmar, Christian minorities are as well



    Ethnic Kachin, Chin and Naga endure suffering. Religious discrimination is in some cases even institutionalised. Christians are seen as the expression of a foreign religion, outside of the nationalist view. For years the military regime has applied stringent discriminatory measures.


    VATICAN - ASIA
    The world is in urgent need of the Church's mission

    Bernardo Cervellera

    October is a month devoted to awakening the call to mission among Christians. In the world there is indifference or enmity towards God and the Church. Religions are considered the source of all wars. Christianity is the encounter with a Person who changes the life of the believer and places him at the service of the wounds of the world, torn by frustrations and fratricidal wars. The example of the Patriarch of Baghdad and of the President of South Korea.


    AsiaNews IS ALSO A MONTHLY!

    AsiaNews monthly magazine (in Italian) is free.
     

    SUBSCRIBE NOW

    News feed

    Canale RSScanale RSS 

    Add to Google









     

    IRAN 2016 Banner

    2003 © All rights reserved - AsiaNews C.F. e P.Iva: 00889190153 - GLACOM®