Last flight departs as Iraq imposes ban for Kurdish independence vote

Last flight departs as Iraq imposes ban for Kurdish independence voteBy Maher Chmaytelli and Tulay Karadeniz ERBIL, Iraq/ANKARA (Reuters) – The last international flight left Erbil airport on Friday as the Baghdad government imposed an air ban on Iraqi Kurdistan in retaliation for an independence vote that has drawn widespread opposition from foreign powers. Iraq’s Kurds overwhelmingly backed independence in Monday’s referendum, defying neighboring countries, which fear the vote could lead to renewed conflict in the region. Erbil airport was busier than usual as passengers scrambled to catch the last flights out before the ban went into force at 6 p.m. (1500 GMT) on Friday.



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