Statement of International Foundation for Sustainable Peace and Development on Referendum in Iraq
International Foundation for Sustainable Peace and Development (IFSPD) expresses its serious concern over the so-called referendum on independence in the region of the Republic of Iraq, populated mainly by Kurds.
This referendum is a unilateral act that is not approved by the federal authorities of Iraq. It was boycotted by Arabs and Turkmens residing in this region. It contradicts article 1 of the Iraqi Constitution, which provides for the unity of Iraq, and it violates the rights of the remaining peoples and citizens of Iraq to live within a single, indivisible and sovereign Iraq.
IFSPD considers it necessary to recall the statement of the UN Security Council on 21 September 2017 about the possible destabilizing influence of the referendum. As the Un Security Council has noted, the referendum is planned during the time of ongoing operation against Daesh and it can divert efforts from ensuring the security necessary for the voluntary return of 3 million refugees and internally displaced persons.
IFSPD also recalls that on the eve of the referendum, warnings were received about the possible use of trade, economic, transport and other sanctions by Iraq's neighbors with respect to its region populated mainly by Kurds. There is no doubt that, first of all, the application of sanctions will result in difficulties and serious suffering for the Kurds living in this region of Iraq.
Thus, as a result of the referendum, the situation in the Middle East will worsen even more as the hope for stability and security in this critically important region of the world will run out.
The International Foundation considers the above-mentioned referendum as an illegitimate act and by declaring that it cannot have any legal consequences, IFSPD expresses its support for the sovereignty, territorial integrity and inviolability of the internationally recognized borders of Iraq.
IFSPD encourages all participants of the Middle East process not to take acts that are aimed at changing the borders of states unilaterally.