September 14, 2017 / 1:46 PM / 10 months ago

Kirkuk governor says Iraqi parliament vote to remove him 'unlawful'

KIRKUK, Iraq (Reuters) - The governor of Iraq’s oil-rich Kirkuk province condemned a vote by Iraq’s parliament on Thursday to remove him from office as “unlawful” and vowed to stay in power.

The decision to remove Najmaddin Kareem came after Kirkuk - claimed by both the central government in Baghdad and the autonomous Kurdish region in northern Iraq - voted to take part in a referendum set for Sept. 25 on Kurdish independence.

“I will stay in office,” Kareem told Reuters, hours after the parliamentary vote... The referendum will go ahead as planned.”

Reporting by Ulf Laessing; Editing by Gareth Jones

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