Iraqi Kurds of military operation

Iran's Khoramshahr missile is displayed by the Revolutionary Guard during a military parade marking the 37th anniversary of Iraq's 1980 invasion of Iran Tehran Iran Friday Sept. 22 2017

Turkey has been a vociferous opponent of the independence referendum in Iraqi Kurdistan, which is deemed a threat to regional stability by Ankara.

In a brief statement on its official website, the Turkish General Staff said the third phase of the military exercise will start on Tuesday jointly with the Iraqi military in the Habur border gate, also known as Ibrahim Khalil border crossing, on the Turkish-Iraqi border in Silopi district of Sirnak province.

Peshmerga forces cast their ballots in the Kurdish Regional Government (KRG)'s non binding independence referendum on 25 September 2017. In Iran, the division of Iraq is viewed within the broader context of the possible further disintegration of Middle Eastern states.

"We in Syria only recognize a united Iraq and reject any procedure that leads to the fragmentation of Iraq", Foreign Minister Walid al-Moualem was cited as saying by Syrian state news agency SANA.

He also told Iraqi Kurd authorities to ensure that the work of the United Nations mission in Iraq "will be allowed to continue unhindered".

"The land borders between Iran and the Kurdistan Region of Iraq are open and these borders have not been closed", the ministry said, adding that only air borders between Iran and this region were now closed.

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Iran has accused the Trump administration of not living up to its requirements on sanctions relief under the nuclear deal. Nevertheless, U.S. allies don't want Trump to close off the possibility of a peaceful end to the crisis.

The U.S., along with Turkey, the U.K., Iran and the Iraqi central government have urged Erbil to abandon the controversial poll but the vote went ahead Monday unhindered.

It followed reports on Sunday evening that Tehran had ordered all flights to and from Iraqi Kurdistan to be halted in response to the independence referendum.

At the Irbil press conference, Barzani said he was unaware that Iran had closed its airspace, but that it was Iran's "own decision".

This is a nonbinding vote but Kurdish leaders hope it will be a major step toward nationhood.

Earlier, the NTV broadcaster said Turkey had blocked access into the country's southeast from northern Iraq at the Habur border gate.

Iraq's central government has threatened to intervene militarily if the vote leads to violence.

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