TURKEY

Turkey stresses opposition to Kurdish independence vote

TURKEY STRESSES OPPOSITION TO KURDISH INDEPENDENCE VOTE

Foreign Ministry reiterates that referendum on Kurdish split from Baghdad would damage regional stability

Turkey on Wednesday reiterated its opposition to an independence referendum in northern Iraq's Kurdish region following media reports that Ankara had softened its stance.

Last month, the Kurdish Regional Government (KRG) announced it would hold a referendum on independence from Baghdad on Sept. 25.

In a statement, Foreign Ministry spokesman Huseyin Muftuoglu stressed Ankara's "unambiguous views that preservation of Iraq's territorial integrity and political unity is among the irrevocable principles of our foreign policy".

He added that the government was "against the KRG's decision to conduct an independence referendum.

"There is no change in our position."

Several media outlets in the Kurdish region recently claimed that Turkey would accept independence under certain conditions.

Muftuoglu referred to the reports as "completely groundless and unfounded".

Turkey has said an independence vote would be a "grave mistake" that would "result in undesired results" for regional peace and security.

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