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Iraq refuses to discuss Kurdish independence after referendum
Last Updated: 2017-09-27 08:16 | Xinhua
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The Iraqi government ruled out talks on possible secession for Kurdish-held parts of northern Iraq on Tuesday after a referendum on independence showed strong support for a split, Erbil-based Rudaw TV said.

The electoral commission supervising the independence referendum said Tuesday that initial results have shown that 93 percent of Iraqi Kurds support Kurdistan independence from Iraq.

Baghdad persisted in its unwavering opposition to Kurdish independence. "We are not ready to discuss or have a dialogue about the results of the referendum because it is unconstitutional," Iraqi Prime Minister Haider al-Abadi said in a speech on Monday night.

The electoral commission said that while vote counting was still running, initial results show that 93 percent of voters support independence, compared to 6.71 percent objecting.

Those are the results achieved after counting 282,000 ballots, according to the commission.

A representative of the commission said, however, that results can still change as the counting continues, with results slated for announcement on Thursday.

It said nearly 3.3 million voters took part in the polls, putting turnout at an estimated 72.16 percent.

On Monday, Kurds headed to polling stations to attend the polls rejected by the Iraqi central government, the United Nations, the European Union, the United Statesand regional powers Turkey and Iran.

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