Federal court says Kurdistan’s independence referendum “unconstitutional”

Kurds wave flags of Iraqi Kurdistan during protest against escalating crisis with Baghdad

Baghdad ( The Supreme Federal Court issued a verdict, on Monday, considering Kurdistan’s independence referendum “unconstitutional”.

The court also cancelled all results of the controversial vote, which sparked outrage between Baghdad and Erbil.

“The Federal Court issued the verdict to consider the Kurdish region’s referendum unconstitutional and this ruling is final,” Reuters quoted a court spokesman as saying. “The power of this ruling should now cancel all the results of the referendum.”

The court is responsible for settling disputes between Iraq’s central government and regions including Kurdistan. The verdict cannot be appealed.

Kurds voted overwhelmingly to break away from Iraq in a referendum held on Sept. 25, defying the central government in Baghdad as well as neighboring Turkey and Iran who have their own Kurdish minorities.

The court had already ruled on Nov. 6 that no region or province can secede and the Kurdistan Regional Government said last week it would respect that verdict.

Iraqi government forces and the Iran-backed Popular Mobilization Forces launched a surprise offensive on Oct. 16 in retaliation. Government forces managed to wrest back control of the oil city of Kirkuk and other disputed territories.

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