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The Iraqi government has placed a ban on international flights to airports in the country’s Kurdish area.The flight ban is the clearest evidence of increased tensions between Iraq’s central government and the Kurdish area.Two days later, Iraq’s parliament called the referendum vote ‘unconstitutional.’ The lawmakers asked Prime Minister Haider al-Abadi to send troops to Kurdish-held Kirkuk to take control of its oil fields.They also urged him to enforce a decision to dismiss Kirkuk’s governor for holding the vote.Instead, Ankara's answer to the "Kurdish question" has been, more often than not, to deny the existence of the Kurds altogether and simultaneously to attempt to pacify the region militarily, crushing all dissent while forcibly assimilating its "mountain Turk," that is Kurdish, population.
Humanitarian workers say the flight cancellations could harm the area’s 1.6 million refugees and displaced people.
Here the residents of Kurdish-majority Hasankeyf protest the government's building of the Ilisu dam that would flood their 11,000-year old town, the seat of much Kurdish history.
In more recent times, the Turkish government has sought to exploit a massive infrastructure undertaking, the Southeast Anatolian Project (Güneydoğu Anadolu Projesi or GAP), as a means of resolving the Kurdish dilemma.
The Iraqi parliament told the 34 countries with diplomatic offices in Kurdistan to close them down.
It also called for the deployment of forces to areas that had been under Iraqi government control before Islamic State (IS) forces captured Mosul in June 2014.