Macron offers to mediate between Iraqi government and Kurds

French president Emmanuel Macron, right, shakes hands with Iraqi Prime minister Haider al-Abadi prior to their meeting at the Elysee palace in Paris, Thursday, Oct. 5, 2017. Al-Abadi is meeting with French President Emmanuel Macron for talks on the international fight against Islamic State group extremists and rebuilding Iraq's economy.(Ludovic Marin, Pool via AP)

PARIS (AP) — French President Emmanuel Macron is offering for France to mediate between the Iraqi government and Kurds seeking independence after a controversial referendum.

Macron made the offer after meeting Iraqi Prime Minister Haider al-Abadi in Paris on Thursday in wide-ranging talks about French support for the fight against the Islamic State group and rebuilding Iraqi’s economy.

Macron said France and others are worried about the situation of the Kurds after last month’s referendum, and said France supports the stability and territorial integrity of Iraq. He insisted on the importance of “national reconciliation and inclusive governance” that includes Kurds, “with whom France maintains close ties.”

Macron said dialogue “is the only path” and “France is ready . to contribute actively to mediation.”