In a statement delivered on Wednesday (August 22) during a joint news conference in Baghdad with his Iraqi counterpart Ibrahim al-Jaafari, Turkey’s Minister of Foreign Affairs Mevlüt Çavuşoğlu said Ankara expects the KRG to cancel the referendum on independence scheduled to be held on September 25.
“Our expectation from Arbil is absolutely plain and clear. It is the cancelation of this referendum decision”, he said.
According to reports of Hürriyet Daily News, Çavuşoğlu emphasized the importance of “the stability, unity and solidarity of the region” and added: “Talks are ongoing between [the KRG] and Baghdad in order for their demands to be met. We feel content about this, but the stability, unity and solidarity of the region is very important. Our Kurdish brothers’ interests and future is with the unity and solidarity of Iraq. We will convey our thoughts to them today once again”.
Repeating on Turkey’s support for the KRG and its constitutional rights as put down in the Iraqi constitution, Çavuşoğlu continued with the following remarks: “However, we told Arbil about the wrong steps it is taking”.
Çavuşoğlu also referred to the hanging of KRG flags at buildings of government institutions in Kirkuk as ‘wrong’ since it is ‘against the constitution of Iraq’.