DAMASCUS, SYRIA (3:30 PM) – Israeli Minister of Justice Ayelet Shaked has on Monday declared that the independence of Iraqi Kurdistan would be a beneficial step for both Israel and the West in general.
During an anti-terrorism conference in Herzliya, the Israeli Minister expressed her desire to see the Kurdistan independence movement lead to a secession of the Kurdish region of the Republic of Iraq, in order to establish an independent state.
“Israel and the Western countries have a major interest in the establishment of the state of Kurdistan (…) I think that the time has come for the US to support the process.” Shaked said.
Shaked is known for her position regarding the issue, as last year she made a similar call, in which she asked the Israeli government to openly express its support for the establishment of a Kurdish state, as she believes an independent Kurdistan would be friendly towards Israel and the Western powers.
Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu earlier voiced similar opinions when he visited 33 members of the US Congress on August 14. Netanyahu stated that he believed the Iraqi Kurds are “a pro-Western people who share similar values as the Israeli people.”
The regional government of Iraqi Kurdistan is currently in the process of organising an independence referendum that is due to take place on September 25. Senior officials of the regional administration have repeatedly stated their intent to carry on with the referendum, despite national and international fears that it would lead to further destabilisation and conflict in already war-torn Iraq.
According to the Iraqi government however, any independence referendum taking place under current circumstances and without taking into account the provisions of the Iraqi constitution will be considered null and void by Baghdad.