Iraqi Kurds will hold a referendum regarding whether or not to declare independence from the war-torn state within months, according to Kurdish leader Massud Barzani. (Related: Former CIA Chief: Iraq Doesn’t Exist)
Iraq is currently in the midst of turmoil as the Islamic State of Iraq and Syria (ISIS), makes advances towards Baghdad. ISIS recently declared an Islamic caliphate covering borders stretching from Syria to eastern Iraq. (Related: Don’t Be Alarmed But Radical Muslims Just Declared Their Own Empire Across Much Of The Middle East)
Barzani said the time was right for the referendum as Kurds in the north face more violence by ISIS. However, Barzani said he did not know when the vote would take place and parliament would ultimately have to respect the decision.
“We will hold a referendum in Kurdistan and we will respect and be bound by the decision of our people and hope that others will do likewise,” Barzani told the BBC.
Turkey has already stated it would be opposed to Kurdish independence, likely because a large minority of Kurds reside in the east. (Related: The Syrian Civil War Has Merged With Iraq)