Macron invites Iraqi PM to Paris
French President Emmanuel Macron has invited Iraqi Prime Minister Haider al-Abadi to visit on October 5 to discuss the Kurdish independence referendum, offering France's help in calming tensions over the vote, Business Recorder reports.
In a statement, the presidency said France wanted to "help Iraq to stop tensions from setting in" after the deeply divisive vote on Monday saw Iraqi Kurdistan overwhelmingly support secession.
"Emmanuel Macron stressed the importance of preserving the unity and integrity of Iraq while recognising the rights of the Kurdish people. Any escalation must be avoided," the presidency said in the statement.
"Faced with the priority of fighting Daesh and the stabilisation of Iraq, Iraqis must remain united," it added, referring to the Islamic State group.