US supports Iraqi unity government over Kirkuk autonomy

By Rudaw 19 minutes ago

ERBIL, Kurdistan Region - The US State Department reiterated Washington’s support to the central government in Baghdad and a united Iraq on Thursday during Kirkuk Governor Najmaldin Karim's visit to the US capital.

"We support the central government in Baghdad and Prime Minister [Haider al-] Abadi and his efforts to continue to govern Iraq through a unity government, and that support and that policy is not going to change," State Department spokesperson John Kirby said when asked if the US would support autonomy for the Kirkuk province.

Governor Karim is visiting Washington to urge the US to broaden its support for Kurdistan's economy and war effort, his visit comes just over a week after he said "Kirkuk needs to get away from Baghdad," following the central government's decision to halt the export of oil in that region, a move which has further hurt Kirkuk and the Kurdistan Region economically.

Kirby said he wasn't "aware" if Karim had met with anyone in the State Department yet to discuss these issues.