Today is 25 September 2017 and if all goes well the Kurds will vote on referendum to become an independent region/nation.
Here is a paper by a group that I have worked with in the past…..the International Crisis Group…..it is about the risks involved in the vote by the Kurds….
On 25 September, barring a last-minute postponement, the Iraqi Kurdistan region will hold an independence referendum. Voters will be asked whether they want “the Kurdistan region and the Kurdish areas outside the region’s administration to become an independent state”. The referendum cannot turn Kurdistan into an independent state, regardless of turnout and outcome, because the vote is merely consultative and legally non-binding. Still, the situation presents serious risks, both if the referendum is held and if the price paid to delay it is too high.
So far the Kurds are the only ones that see this as a good thing…..even the US has tried to convince the Kurds to wait and be logical….so far they are damn straight going to go for it……even if it means more problems to a region that does not need more problems…..
As the Kurdish independence referendum draws near in Iraq, a war of words is threatening to grow into violence. Some Iraqi paramilitary factions under the Popular Mobilization Units (PMU) are increasing their warnings against the vote, and some Kurds are responding with talk of resorting to weapons. Iraq’s parliament voted Sept. 14 to dismiss the governor of Kirkuk province, who favors Kurdish independence, and the Kurdistan Regional Government (KRG) responded by announcing it is ending its partnership with Baghdad.
Reuters reported that the decision to remove the governor, Najmaldin Karim, “comes after Kirkuk — an oil-rich province claimed by both the central government in Baghdad and the autonomous Kurdish region in northern Iraq — decided to take part in a referendum set for Sept. 25 on Kurdish independence.”
Meanwhile, Karim is ignoring his ouster. This all could lead to a new spiral of violence even before the country rids itself of the Islamic State (IS).
The plan to hold an independence referendum in Iraqi Kurdistan next week has run into a new obstacle:
Iraq’s supreme court has approved a request by Prime Minister Haider al-Abadi to suspend an independence referendum that the country’s Kurdistan region planned to hold later this month.
The court said Monday the vote will be on hold until it reviews cases regarding the constitutionality of the vote.
The referendum will probably still take place, and the Kurdish parliament endorsed proceeding with the vote on Friday, but the ruling confirms that Baghdad won’t view it as legitimate. The court ruling comes on the heels of warnings from the Iraqi prime minister that Baghdad is prepared to use force if the referendum results in violence. Abadi also raised the prospect that the referendum would serve as an invitation to other governments to meddle in Iraqi affairs:
Only more problems for the US military to solve….and they have not been too good at that aspect here lately…..more blood and death.
There is a couple of things to keep in mind when thinking about the vote……
On Sept. 25, the Kurdistan Region of Iraq (KRI) is expected to hold its long-awaited referendum on independence. While it has generated much nationalist excitement among Kurds in the KRI capital of Irbil and abroad, the central government in Baghdad and the international community have objected to the vote. The United States has mobilized diplomatic capital to persuade Irbil to postpone the vote. Last week, Western diplomats offered an alternative proposal: Postpone the vote and enter into new mediated negotiations with Baghdad. But without ironclad guarantees or a specified timetable, Irbil has rejected those initiatives, continuing to prepare for the referendum.
The referendum was never meant to be a silver bullet, ending negotiations on Kurds’ path to statehood. But recent escalations by all sides have produced a self-fulfilling crisis with the prospect of military conflict, fueled by both Arab and Kurdish nationalism.
As a premonition of things to come I offer up the latest clash….
Iraqi Kurds and Turkmens clashed in Kirkuk on Monday night, a week before the disputed territory votes in a referendum on independence for Iraqi Kurdistan. The clashes prompted local police to deploy around the city to prevent ethnic tensions from escalating. Kirkuk’s extensive Turkmen and Arab populations largely oppose the inclusion of their city in the controversial vote scheduled for Sept. 25.
Like I keep saying….this vote could create more problems than it solves.