FILE PHOTO: Iraqi Kurdish President Masoud Barzani casts his vote during Kurds independence referendum in Erbil, Iraq September 25, 2017. REUTERS/Azad Lashkari/File Photo
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Iraqi Kurdish President Massoud Barzani departed office on Wednesday, leaving his nephew to reconcile with the central government in Baghdad, with regional neighbors and with rival Kurdish parties after a failed referendum on independence.Nechirvan Barzani, who has served alongside his uncle as prime minister, will now be the main authority figure in the executive of the Kurdish autonomous region, following Massoud Barzani's departure as president, Kurdish officials said.Despite no longer being president, Massoud Barzani will not be retreating from public life, government officials said.In his televised address on Sunday announcing the end of his presidency, Barzani said that he would remain a peshmerga, or Kurdish fighter, and will continue to battle for his people's lifelong dream of independence.
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