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Why Iraq's Kurds are united in Baghdad and divided in Erbil

Despite their internal divisions, Kurdish parties are united in the face of Iraqi Prime Minister Haider al-Abadi's plan to reshuffle the Cabinet.

ERBIL, Iraqi Kurdistan — The ongoing reform push by Iraq's Prime Minister Haider al-Abadi has brought about a sense of unity in the Kurdish ranks, unseen for the past couple of years.

When Abadi declared plans in February to reshuffle his Cabinet, an unintended consequence of his efforts was uniting major Kurdish factions in opposition to his stated goals. Kurds have stood against Abadi's efforts to circumvent established political blocs and pick technocratic ministers for his Cabinet without having them being nominated by political groups.

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