Speaker of Iraqi Kurdish parliament denied entry to capital: assistant

Reuters News
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Posted: Oct 12, 2015 3:13 AM

ERBIL, Iraq (Reuters) - Kurdish security forces stopped the speaker of parliament in Iraq's Kurdish north from entering the capital on Monday, his personal assistant said, in an escalating political crisis that threatens to destabilize the autonomous region.

Speaker Yousif Mohammed's personal assistant said forces loyal to the Kurdistan Democratic Party (KDP) had turned him back on the road from Sulaimaniyah to Erbil, where the parliament is located.

The KDP, which controls Erbil, accuses the Gorran party to which the speaker belongs of provoking violent unrest that left five people dead.

"He has been prevented by KDP forces and he's now returned (to Sulaimaniyah)," said the speaker's personal assistant Daroun Rahim. "It's a very dangerous development".

(Reporting by Isabel Coles; Editing by Andrew Heavens)