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As Iraqi Kurds vote for independence, Turkey dials up hostility

Kurds in northern Iraq are holding a historic vote for independence, but opposition from their neighbors, especially Turkey, has ratcheted up regional tensions.

Kurds in northern Iraq are casting their ballots in a referendum that moves the region closer than ever before toward full independence. But outrage in Turkey over the measure cast a pall over the historic vote.

Turkey, like other neighbors, has made it clear it will no longer be business as usual with the Kurdistan Regional Government (KRG), which called the plebiscite to crown a quarter-century of autonomy for what is considered the world’s biggest ethnic group without a state.

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