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Why calls for independence are in decline in Iraqi Kurdistan

The economic crisis in Iraqi Kurdistan has decreased independence ambitions significantly, while the social and political demands to turn toward Baghdad are increasing in the region.

ERBIL, Iraq — The salary crisis in the Kurdistan Region of Iraq has led to further economic, political and social interdependence with Baghdad, which began to melt the Kurdish dream of independence. The economic situation has affected even the most hard-line nationalist politicians in the Kurdistan Region. Massoud Barzani, the president of Iraqi Kurdistan, visited Baghdad on Sept. 29 as the head of a major political delegation representing most of the Kurdish forces in a bid to solve outstanding economic and political issues with the Baghdad-based Iraqi government.

Barzani said that he demanded autonomy for the Kurdistan Region and not secession from Iraq. Similarly, Nechirvan Barzani, the prime minister of the Kurdistan Region, said June 2 that he sees Baghdad as Iraqi Kurdistan’s strategic depth.

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