‘“A colossal miscalculation”: Why the Kurds’ independence bid might lead to civil war in Iraq’

“The Iraqi central government in Baghdad and the semi-autonomous region of Iraqi Kurdistan are fighting over control of Kirkuk, a multiethnic region in northeastern Iraq that sits atop some of the country’s most lucrative oil fields. It’s an area that has been a flashpoint between the country’s Arab majority and the Kurdish minority on and off for decades.  The Kurds want Kirkuk to be part of a future independent state of Kurdistan, controlled from its capital, Erbil. The Iraqi central government, on the other hand, wants to keep Kirkuk — along with the rest of Iraqi Kurdistan — as part of a unified Iraq, controlled by Baghdad.”