ERBIL, Kurdistan Region (Kurdistan 24) – The Estonian Parliament, known as Riigikogu, on Tuesday passed a statement endorsing the right of self-determination for the people of the Kurdistan Region.
In a statement submitted by 27 Members of Parliament, the Riigikogu emphasized the need for dialogue to resolve all the issues between the Iraqi government and the Kurdistan Regional Government (KRG) to avoid escalations.
The statement, approved by 43 parliament members, recognizes the “legitimate aspirations of the Kurdish people to exercise the right of self-determination.
The statement also called on Iraq’s neighboring countries, particularly Turkey and Iran, “not to interfere in the internal affairs of the country.”
The Riigikogu “invites all parties to maintain a peaceful, transparent, democratic, and mutually respectful attitude after the [Kurdistan Region’s] independence referendum,” the parliament’s press office stated.
The Riigikogu calls on the Iraqi government and the KRG “to solve the issue of the status of [Kurdistan] after the referendum [through] negotiations.”
“[We] hope the Kurdistan referendum will be a step toward the non-violent resolution of the status of Kurds in Iraq,” the statement continued.
The statement expressed Estonia’s respect for the territorial integrity of Iraq; however, it added that the “borders could be changed only peacefully, through [a] democratic, free, and equal expression of will by nations.”
Following the Region’s historic independence referendum on Sep. 25, the central government in Iraq imposed a set of punitive measures against Kurdistan as punishment for the vote where nearly 93 percent voted for secession from Iraq.
Editing by Karzan Sulaivany