Both Turkey and Iran have threatened sanctions against the Kurdish region, including possible flight bans and the closing of border crossings. Turkish and Iraqi troops are conducting military exercises on Iraq’s northern border near Kurdistan, and Iranian forces are carrying out similar maneuvers on its border with Iraq.
The move by Mr. Abadi was viewed in Kurdistan as the beginning of a campaign to pressure the region to back away from independence. Baghdad has rejected the referendum, calling it unconstitutional, and has refused to negotiate with the Kurdish leadership.
The referendum was opposed by virtually the entire international community, including the United States, which feared that it would destabilize Iraq and undermine the American-led coalition against Islamic State militants.
Source: New York Times