A handout picture provided by the office of Iranian President Hassan Rouhani show him (R) meeting with Nechirvan Barzani, prime minister of Iraq's Kurdistan Regional Goernment (KRG), in Tehran on January 21, 2018. AFP PHOTO / HO / IRANIAN PRESIDENCY
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Iran's President Hassan Rouhani Sunday called for boosting relations with the Iraqi Kurdish region as part of a united Iraq, Iranian media reported, after ties were strained over an independence referendum in the area last year.The call came during a visit by the semi-autonomous Kurdistan region's Prime Minister Nechirvan Barzani, the first such high-level trip to Iran since last year's Kurdish independence referendum which Iran strongly opposed.The Kurdish referendum on Sept. 25, which produced an overwhelming "yes" for independence, angered Iraq's central government and neighbors Iran and Turkey, which have their own restive Kurdish minorities.
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