Iraqi Prime Minister Haider al-Abadi met on Saturday with the semi-autonomous Kurdistan region’s Prime Minister Nechirvan Barzani for the first time since conflict broke out over a Kurdish independence referendum, officials said.
The Kurdish referendum on Sept. 25, which produced an overwhelming ‘yes’ for independence, angered Baghdad and Iraq’s neighbors Turkey and Iran, which have their own restive Kurdish minorities, and brought a rebuke from the United States and European Union, the Iraqi Kurds’ Western supporters.
At the meeting, Abadi renewed his conditions for lifting restrictions imposed on the Kurdistan region after the referendum, including a direct international air travel ban.
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