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Iraq says disappointed over Catalonia’s independence declaration

Iraqi Foreign Minister Ibrahim al-Jaafari during a press conference at a mourning ceremony for former Iraqi president Jalal Talabani.


Baghdad (IraqiNews.com) The Iraqi Foreign Ministry has expressed disappointment about Catalonia’s unilateral declaration of independence .

“The decision endangers safety and peaceful coexistence in Spain and destabilizes democracy,” Ahmed Mahjoub, the ministry’s spokesperson, said in a statement on Sunday.

“The Iraqi Foreign Ministry calls for self-restraint and commitment to provisions of the constitution in a way that preserves unity and sovereignty,” he added. Moreover, the ministry expressed solidarity with people and government of Spain “against the challenge, which targets the unity of the country as well as democratic values.”

On Friday, the regional Catalan parliament declared the independence from Spain, a step that was considered illegal by Madrid.

PM Mariano Rajoy dissolved, on the same day, the regional parliament and the removal of the Catalan leader Carles Puigdemont. He ordered new local elections on December 21, depending on article no.155 of constitution, which states direct rule on Catalonia.

A constitutional crisis has occurred in Spain since Catalonia held independence referendum earlier this month, challenging a court verdict that stated unconstitutionality of the referendum.

Similar issue took place in Iraq when autonomous Kurdistan Regional Government held independence referendum, late September.

Kurdistan was created in 1970, after an agreement with the Iraqi government, to end years of conflicts. It gained autonomous governance based on the 2005 constitution, however, it is still considered a part of Iraq.

Iraqi troops, backed by Popular Mobilization Forces, then took over Kirkuk province from Kurdish Peshmerga fighters reaching to southern borders of Erbil, fulfilling instructions by Prime Minister Haidar al-Abadi to retake areas where sovereignty is disputed with Kurdistan Region’s Government.


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