Iraqi parliament dismisses Kirkuk governor upon PM request

An Iraqi lawmaker says parliament has dismissed the Kurdish governor of Iraq's ethnically-mixed Kirkuk province upon a request from the prime minister.

Hussein al-Maliki says that all Kurdish lawmakers boycotted Thursday's session, while Arab lawmakers voted in favor. A breakdown for the vote was not immediately available.

Al-Maliki did not say why the governor was fired, but the move came after Kirkuk's provincial council voted to take part in a referendum on Kurdish independence slated for later this month.

The Kurds took control of the oil-rich province, which also contains large Arab, Turkmen and Christian communities, when the Islamic State group swept across Iraq in the summer of 2014 and the Iraqi military crumbled.