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Massud Barzani, Jalal Talabani - ASHARQ AL-AWSAT English Archive
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FILE – In this June 1, 2009 file photo, Kurdish president Massud Barzani, right, and Iraqi President Jalal Talabani open a ceremonial valve during an event to celebrate the start of oil exports from the autonomous region of Kurdistan, in the northern Kurdish city of Irbil, Iraq. The split is growing between Iraq’s central government and the Kurds after the autonomous Kurdish region for the first time unilaterally sold oil abroad, a symbolic show of economic independence from Baghdad that could build momentum for an outright break. The central government has denounced the sale as “robbery,” but the Kurds vow more sales.(AP Photo/Safin Hamed, Pool, File)