Of­fi­cials say 92% voted in fa­vor of Kur­dish in­de­pen­dence

The Oneida Daily Dispatch (Oneida, NY) - - Weather -

IR­BIL, IRAQ » The Kur­dish ref­er­en­dum on in­de­pen­dence from Iraq was ap­proved by more than 92 per­cent of vot­ers, of­fi­cials said Wed­nes­day, as Iraq’s prime min­is­ter vowed to keep his coun­try united with­out re­sort­ing to the use of force.

Even with the strong sup­port, the non­bind­ing vote is un­likely to lead to for­mal in­de­pen­dence, but it has es­ca­lated long-run­ning ten­sions with Bagh­dad, which has moved to block flights in and out of the Kurds’ au­ton­o­mous re­gion. Iraq and its neigh­bors, along with vir­tu­ally the en­tire in­ter­na­tional com­mu­nity, are op­posed to any re­draw­ing of the map.

Hen­drin Mo­hammed, head of the Kur­dish re­gion’s elec­tion com­mis­sion, an­nounced the of­fi­cial re­sults, say­ing the ref­er­en­dum passed with 92.73per­cent sup­port and turnout of more than 72 per­cent.

The vote was held in the Kur­dish re­gion’s three prov­inces and in some dis­puted ter­ri­to­ries held by Kur­dish forces but claimed by Bagh­dad.

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