“There must be strong alternatives to postponing the referendum”

“We should be offered an alternative to the demands of the postponement of the referendum and this alternative be stronger than the referendum,” said Iraqi Kurdistan President Masoud Barzani.

Iraqi Kurdistan President Masoud Barzani came up with US Secretary of Defense James Mattis.

According to the statement made by the Iraqi Kurdistan Presidency, Barzani accepted James Mattis and his delegation at Erbil's Pirmam district.

In the statement, Mattis stated that the US will continue to support the peshmerga, Barzani thanked Mattis for help.

In a statement referring to the referendum planned to be made on September 25 in Iraqi Kurdistan, Mattis said that the referendum decision is “timeless”.

Mattis also said that the referendum decision would put obstacles with the war against the Daesh and argue that it would cause trouble the fight against terrorism. Barzani emphasized that the referendum decision is not a personal decision, that the people are legitimate, that it is not contrary to the principles of democracy and human rights, and that it will not be a problem with the fight Daesh.

Referring to the violation of the constitution and historical process of the people of Kurdistan with the Iraqi state, Barzani noted that the Iraqi Constitution gave this right to the people of Kurdistan.

Barzani stresses that forcible union will never bring success and peace: “We aim to live together but we could not succeed. We want to live as two good neighbors to prevent further deepening of the problems. The people will insist on defending their rights through violent, peaceful means and will continue their negotiations with Baghdad to live together as two good neighbors.” (ILKHA)

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