A Kurdish flag hangs in the Irbil International Airport, Iraq, Sept. 27, 2017. (AP Photo/Khalid Mohammed, File)
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Iraqi Prime Minister Haider al-Abadi said in a decree Tuesday he would lift a ban on international air traffic to the Kurdistan Region and flights could resume within one week. International flights to and from the semi-autonomous region's two main airports in Irbil and Sulaimaniyah were halted on Sept. 29 as part of sanctions imposed on the Kurds after they held an independence referendum four days earlier in defiance of Baghdad and voted overwhelmingly in favor of separation.The decree comes amid a dispute over the 2018 budget, which the Kurds have vehemently opposed since it was passed by Parliament earlier this month.Soon after the decree was issued, a legal advisor to Iraq's President Fouad Massoum, said Massoum was refusing to approve the budget.
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