Iraq`s Barzani says Kurdish self-rule in Kirkuk to stay

Iraqi Kurdish leader Massud Barzani said Friday there was no going back on autonomous Kurdish rule in oil city Kirkuk and other towns now defended against Sunni militants by Kurdish fighters.

Arbil: Iraqi Kurdish leader Massud Barzani said Friday there was no going back on autonomous Kurdish rule in oil city Kirkuk and other towns now defended against Sunni militants by Kurdish fighters.

"Now, this issue ... is achieved," he said, referring to the Kurds` decades-old ambition to incorporate the territory in their autonomous region in the north over the objections of successive governments in Baghdad.

Kurdish forces stepped in when federal government forces withdrew in the face of a jihadist-led offensive earlier this month.

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