President of Iraqi Kurdistan autonomous region, Massud Barzani answers AFP's journalists' questions during an interview on October 12, 2013 in the northern Kurdish city of Arbil
President of Iraqi Kurdistan autonomous region, Massud Barzani answers AFP's journalists' questions during an interview on October 12, 2013 in the northern Kurdish city of Arbil © Safin Hamed - AFP/File
President of Iraqi Kurdistan autonomous region, Massud Barzani answers AFP's journalists' questions during an interview on October 12, 2013 in the northern Kurdish city of Arbil
AFP
Last updated: June 27, 2014

Iraq's Barzani says Kurdish self-rule in Kirkuk is here to stay

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Iraqi Kurdish leader Massud Barzani said Friday there was no going back on autonomous Kurdish rule in oil city Kirkuk and other towns now defended against Sunni militants by Kurdish fighters.

"Now, this (issue) ... is achieved," he said, referring to the Kurds' decades-old ambition to incorporate the territory in their autonomous region in the north over the objections of successive governments in Baghdad.

Kurdish forces stepped in when federal government forces withdrew in the face of a jihadist-led offensive earlier this month.

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