Iraqi parliament 'gives mandate' to PM al-Abadi to deploy troops in Kirkuk

COMPILED FROM WIRE SERVICES
ISTANBUL
Published 27.09.2017 14:42
Updated 27.09.2017 15:35
Members of the Iraqi parliament vote during a parliamentary vote of confidence at the Iraqi parliament in Baghdad, Iraq, 08 September 2014. (EPA Photo)
Members of the Iraqi parliament vote during a parliamentary vote of confidence at the Iraqi parliament in Baghdad, Iraq, 08 September 2014. (EPA Photo)

The Iraqi central parliament on Wednesday asked Prime Minister Haider al-Abadi to send troops to the oil-producing region of Kirkuk, which is currently held by the Kurdistan Regional Government (KRG), and take control of its oilfields, Iraqi state TV reported.

The area, historically claimed by the Kurds, is also home to Turkmen and Arab communities. The KRG included it in the independence referendum held on Monday.

"The government has to bring back the oilfields of Kirkuk under the control of the oil ministry," said the resolution voted by parliament in Baghdad, seen by Reuters.

It called on al-Abadi to "issue orders for the security forces to deploy in the disputed areas, including Kirkuk".

Meanwhile, al-Abadi demanded Wednesday that this week's vote on independence for the autonomous KRG be annulled.

"The referendum must be annulled and dialogue initiated in the framework of the constitution. We will never hold talks on the results of the referendum," he told Iraqi lawmakers.

"We will impose Iraqi law in the entire region of Kurdistan under the constitution," he said.

The official results of Monday's referendum have not yet been announced but an overwhelming "yes" vote was widely expected.

Pressure has been mounting on the KRG since the vote, not just from Baghdad but also from Ankara, with Turkey threatening a range of measures including cutting off oil exports from the region.

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