The big party went on all night. Deaf to the threats of invasion and economic isolation, the Iraqi Kurds enjoyed their time: singing and dancing, distributing candy to the crowd, horns that gave joy a rhythm. They were aware that it may not last.
Waiting for the final results on Tuesday afternoon, the Electoral Commission announced preliminary figures: with a 72 percent turnout, the vote for independence won by 90 percent. In the evening, Kurdistan President Masoud Barzani proclaimed the victory of the Yes in a televised speech.
And just as on the day of the vote, Kurdistan’s neighbors shared their displeasure. They are all opposed to independence and to the advisory referendum that Barzani intends to use to open up new negotiations with Baghdad. However, the central government does not intend to take part in these negotiations.