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Dialog between Baghdad, Kurds possible only within framework of Constitution

October 05, 2017, 0:31 UTC+3

"Both sides need to sit down and agree on resolving these issues," said the Iraqi Ambassador to Moscow Haidar Mansour Hadi

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MOSCOW, October 5. /TASS/. Iraqi government insists on a return to dialog with Kurds within the framework of effective Constitution that was violated by the September 25 referendum in Iraqi Kurdistan, the Iraqi Ambassador to Moscow, Haidar Mansour Hadi told TASS on Wednesday.

"That's what the Iraqi government is trying to say: we have to go back to the Constitution, then we can sit down and talk to resolve any issues we have," he said. 'There are few major issues that need to be resolved and they never be resolved unilaterally just like what happened at the referendum. Both sides need to sit down and agree on resolving these issues.'

Hadi recalled that the Kurdish-populated governorates of Erbil, Sulaymaniyah and Dohuk voted in favor of Iraq’s new Constitution in a referendum in 2005 and the percentage of the voters who supported it - 99% of those who had come to the polls - was higher than in any other governorate.

"That means they [the Kurds] themselves wrote the Constitution and they need to obey by it," he said. "The referendum we witnessed on the 25th of September was the clear violation of the Constitution in the writing of which they participated."

The major issues that are to be resolved in the format of dialog with the Kurds are control over Kirkuk and other areas seized by the Islamic State grouping and the exports of crude oil.

"[…] the Kurdistan leadership export around 900 000 barrels a day without the approval of Iraqi government," Hadi said. "The Iraqi government doesn't know where the revenues from these exports go."

Along with it, the Ambassador underlined Baghdad’s constitutional and moral obligations towards the Kurds as an integral section of the Iraqi people.

"And the tensions now - they are not between the Government and the Kurdish people, no, they are between the Government of Iraq and the Kurdish leadership," Hadi said.

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