Iraqi Kurdistan receives body of late President Talabani | AP US

French-Jewish philosopher and activist Bernard Henri Lévy

French-Jewish philosopher and activist Bernard Henri Lévy

Israel has been among the only countries to openly support an independent Kurdish state, and many Kurds have openly welcomed Israel's support, drawing accusations from Arab leaders that last week's referendum was a Zionist plot.

Leader of Islamic Revolution said the recent independence referendum in Iraqi Kurdistan indicates that major powers aim to create "a new Israel" in the region.

Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan has warned that his country will close its border with Iraqi Kurdistan as part of new sanctions following an independence vote by Iraqi Kurds earlier this month.

Speaking to Turkish media after his trip to Tehran, Erdogan said that Turkey, Iran and the Iraqi central government will decide together if oil exports from Kurdistan should be stopped.

Iraqi Prime Minister Haider al-Abadi confirmed on Thursday that he does not want an armed confrontation with the Kurds in relation to the crisis of the referendum on independence held in the Kurdistan region on September 25.

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But Baghdad has emphasized the parties should resolve the Bashiqa camp problem in order to make progress on other areas.

"We respect the demands of all our citizens, including those of our Kurdish citizens", al-Abadi said, but he added that the government must respect the constitution.

The government imposed an global flight ban and other punitive measures on the Kurdish region, which voted overwhelmingly in favor of statehood.

The nonbinding referendum - in which the Kurds voted more than 90 percent in favor of a break with Iraq - will not immediately result in independence. He was a close ally of the USA, and especially the second Bush administration, whose invasion of Iraq in 2003 resulted in Saddam's ouster and saw Talabani's unlikely ascent to the presidency.

"France is ready to contribute actively to the UN's mediation efforts, if Iraqi authorities so wish", he said.

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"We correspond with the central government in Iraq, and as far as we are concerned, this referendum is illegitimate".

With the ongoing fall of ISIS, Baghdad seeks to impose its constitutional federal authority in the areas that were outside the borders of the Kurdish region before 2003.

But, the government in Baghdad is seeking for a negotiated exit strategy from the current constitutional crisis.

"President (Macron). recalled the importance of preserving unity and Iraq's (territorial) integrity while recognizing the rights of the Kurdish people", the Elysee statement had said.

Kirkuk is one of a number of areas under Kurdish control but claimed by Baghdad because they are outside of the designated territory of the autonomous Kurdish region.

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"Although the government has now declared the offensive over, these civilians are still in immediate need of food, water, shelter, and protection and safety", said Norwegian Refugee Council's (NRC) country director in Iraq, Heidi Diedrich.

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