Iraq’s Masum, Ammar Hakim discuss Kurdish independence vote

Iraq’s President Fuad Masum and Leader of the Arab country’s National Alliance Ammar al-Hakim discussed the issue of the semi-autonomus Kurdistan Region’s independence referendum.

According to a statement released by the Iraqi government, the two officials on Monday explored ways for reaching an understanding that could enhance Iraq’s unity and stability, the Baghdad Post reported.

Masum stressed the importance of creating a political atmosphere that can help pave the way for holding a dialogue between different factions to resolve the current dispute between Erbil and Baghdad.

Hakim, in his turn, called upon political parties to avoid issuing statements that could create tension and complicate the crisis in the Arab country.

Authorities in Iraq’s Kurdish region have announced that the northern territory will hold the independence referendum on September 25.

The referendum on whether to secede from Iraq is planned to be held in the three governorates that make up the Kurdish region and in the areas that are disputed by the Kurdish and Iraqi governments but are currently under Kurdish military control.

The disputed areas include the key oil-rich province of Kirkuk.