Ammar al-Hakim, the leader of Iraq’s National Alliance, has condemned Iraqi Kurdistan’s “unilateral” plan to hold an independence referendum, saying such move would be a threat to Iraq’s unity and peace.

“The (Kurds’) insistence on holding a referendum is a step against Iraq's unity and jeopardizes the peace and health of the community, and deals a heavy blow to the country’s solidarity,” Hakim said in a speech on Friday.

“Dialogue provides a basis for all solutions, and we want to form a national front to defend the unity of Iraq and convince the whole Iraqi people to protect this unity and adhere to it,” he added.

Hakim also called upon the people of Kurdistan to be aware that their power and prosperity depends on their connection with the Iraqi society as a united nation.

Authorities with Iraq’s semi-autonomous Kurdistan region have planned to hold the independence referendum on September 25.

As the referendum nears, Iraqi government as well as Iran and Turkey have expressed firm opposition to such move.

The vote was announced by Masoud Barzani, the president of the Iraqi Kurdish Regional Government (KRG) on June 7.

Earlier this months, Iraqi lawmaker said they are strongly opposed to the move and rejected the legitimacy of the referendum.