Iran's Khamenei tells Iraq's Abadi not to trust US

Kurdistan Regional Government warns of imminent attack

The damage caused by the Iraqi Kurdistan Regional Government (KRG) independence vote is "unrecoverable", Turkish Prime Minister Binali Yıldırım said on October 26.

Iraq has called for the cancellation of the results of the vote, which saw a massive "yes" for independence, as a precondition for any talks.

The Iraqi military's operation to retake the disputed areas, which were seized by Kurdish Peshmerga forces during the battle against so-called Islamic State, sparked clashes that left dozens dead and many more injured - including civilians.

The Kurdish regional government proposed on Wednesday an immediate ceasefire, a suspension of the result of last month's Kurdish independence vote and "starting an open dialogue with the federal government based on the Iraqi Constitution".

Iraqi forces are deploying tanks and artillery just south of a Kurdish-operated oil pipeline that crosses into Turkey, a Kurdish security official said, the latest in a series of Iranian-backed operations against the Kurds.

The website quoted Khamenei as making the comments during a visit on Thursday with Iraqi Prime Minister Haider al-Abadi. Iran, the predominant Shi'ite power in the Middle East, funds and trains Iraqi Shi'ite paramilitaries known as Popular Mobilisation, which fight alongside government troops.

Khamenei also reportedly warned al-Abadi about US policy toward Iraq, saying: "Be careful about Americans deceit and never trust them".




This alliance was short-lived and Barzani sought the aid of Iraqi leader Saddam Hussein, a staunch opponent of Kurdish nationalism, when fighting broke out between the KDP and Talabani's Patriotic Union of Kurdistan (PUK) in the 1990s.

The vote organised by the leadership of autonomous Iraqi Kurdistan in the country's north angered neighbours Turkey and Iran, both fearful of anything that might stoke separatist sentiment among their own large Kurdish minorities.

The Kurds' referendum last month overwhelmingly backed independence from Baghdad.

The fighters of the paramilitary force are "Iraqis who have fought terrorism, defended their country and made sacrifices to defeat (IS)", Abadi said, according to a statement from his office. Barzani took the helm of the party after his father's death in exile in 1979 and joined his rival, future Iraqi President Jalal Talabani, in splitting control of what would become the Kurdish Regional Government in northern Iraq after the US defeated Iraqi forces in the First Persian Gulf War.

The Kurdish offer came after Mr Abadi ordered the Iraqi military to retake disputed territory held by the Kurds.

Abadi has been deeply defensive of his government's close alliance with neighbouring Iran, which like Iraq is a Shiite-majority country.

Iraqi forces launched an offensive on Thursday to recapture the last patch of Iraqi territory still in the hands of Daesh, on the border area with Syria.

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