Iraq’s Prime Minister Haider al-Abadi has demanded Kurdish authorities negate the results of Monday’s historic referendum. The move is the latest attempt by Iraqi officials to prevent Kurdish independence.
Al-Abadi, who earlier this week called the Kurdish vote “unconstitional,” said his government was unwilling to discuss the results of Monday’s referendum with members of the Kurdistan Regional Government.
Dr. Craig Albert, associate professor of political science at Augusta University, said a failure to recognize the vote could potentially be catastrophic for the region.
“A worst-case scenario could see the beginnings of an Iraqi civil war, or a push by Turkish forces into the country,” Albert said.
Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdoğan has touted economic sanctions to protest the Kurdish vote. Albert said the use of military measures by the Turkish government against Iraqi Kurds was likely.
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Craig Albert, PhD Professor of Political Science and Graduate Director of the Master of Arts in Intelligence and Security Studies
Dr. Craig Albert focuses on national security, cyberconflict, ethnic conflict, and political thought.