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Basra politicians call for independence from Baghdad

Mina Aldroubi and Azhar Al-Rubaie write for The National:

Politicians from Iraq’s southern oil producing province of Basra are calling for autonomy in a region that has endured deadly protests over political corruption and the government’s failure to provide adequate public services.

More than 20 of Basra’s provincial council members voted on Tuesday for the establishment of a federal state, the head of the council, Sabah Al Bazzouni said.

"Only 12 votes are required for an absolute majority in the council," Mr Al Bazzouni said. The vote will now be presented to the parliament in Baghdad to be put in motion, he added.

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