Kurdish leader Barzani resigns after independence vote backfires

Kurdistan's parl't to discuss Barzani presidency on Sun.

"I refuse to continue in the position of president of the region after November 1", Barzani's letter said, according to a tweet by the party.

Kurdish MP Iden Maarouf said parliament will meet on Sunday to see how best to "redistribute the president's powers" among the legislative, executive and judicial authorities, AFP reported.

Iraqi forces and Kurdish Peshmerga fighters yesterday started a second round of talks to resolve a conflict over control of the Kurdistan region's border crossings, Iraqi state TV said.

The parliamentary session was held behind closed doors on Sunday because of the sensitive questions that would be discussed, its members said earlier.

Barzani's senior assistant, Hemin Hawrami, told The Associated Press Sunday that the president also asked the parliament in a letter read to lawmakers to devolve his powers between the Kurdish prime minister, Parliament and the judiciary.

"President Barzani called for Parliament / President elections on12/7 to be held in Nov 1".

His resignation could help facilitate a reconciliation between the Kurdistan Regional Government (KRG) and Iraq's central government, whose retaliatory measures since the referendum have transformed the balance of power in the north.

Iran will continue to produce missiles for defence purposes: Rouhani
Vice President Ali Salehi added that "if the nuclear deal is broken, it will have unpredictable consequences". Prior to the meeting with Amano, Iran's president excoriated USA policies before his country's parliament.

Even as the end of Barzani's tenure approaches, his similarly pugilistic tone in a televised speech Sunday made clear he's likely to remain a major voice in Kurdish politics - and a major voice in defense of independence. Downcast, the long-time Kurdish leader blamed the central government in Baghdad for the regional crisis that followed the independence vote."They (Baghdad) used the referendum as an excuse".

Fishkhabur is located on a border triangle between the Turkish, Iraqi and Syrian territories.

Barzani condemned the United States for failing to back the Kurds.

Political life in Kurdistan is dominated by the KDP and PUK of Iraq's late president Jalal Talabani.

After the vote, Masum said the referendum had triggered the assault on Kirkuk. He said "everything must be done to avoid fighting between the Iraqis, and that in line with Iraq's unity and constitution, a dialogue must be held between Erbil (the capital city of Kurdistan Region in Northern Iraq) and Baghdad taking into account the rights of Kurds and minorities".

A first round was held on Friday and Saturday, with Abadi ordering a 24-hour suspension on Friday of military operations against Kurdish forces.

Masoud Barzani took over leadership of the Kurdistan Democratic Party in 1979 after the death of their father, Mulla Mustafa Barzani, an iconic guerrilla commander and the party's founder. Parliament extended its work for two seasons.

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