IRAQ CALLS ON TURKEY TO "İMMEDİATELY" WİTHDRAW İTS TROOPS İN MOSUL
Baghdad demanded the immediate withdrawal of forces it said Turkey “illegally” sent into Iraq. The troops, whom Baghdad said had tanks and artillery, were sent to a camp near the main Islamic State (IS) hub of Mosul.The Kurdistan Regional Government (KRG
Baghdad demanded the immediate withdrawal of forces it said Turkey “illegally” sent into Iraq. The troops, whom Baghdad said had tanks and artillery, were sent to a camp near the main Islamic State (IS) hub of Mosul.
The Kurdistan Regional Government (KRG), which has forces in the area where the Turkish troops deployed and close ties with Ankara, indicated that Turkey aimed to expand the camp.
Turkey has other camps in Iraq but they are inside the official borders of the autonomous Kurdish region. The base near Mosul is in a disputed area claimed by both the KRG and Baghdad.
Facing political pressure as a result of statements by American officials, Prime Minister Haider al-Abadi has taken an increasingly hard public line on foreign forces in Iraq, terming the deployment of ground combat forces a "hostile act."
"The Iraqi authorities call on Turkey to... immediately withdraw from Iraqi territory" a statement from Abadi's office said.
"We have confirmation that Turkish forces, numbering about one armored regiment with a number of tanks and artillery, entered Iraqi territory... allegedly to train Iraqi groups, without a request or authorization from Iraqi federal authorities" it said.
The deployment "is considered a serious violation of Iraqi sovereignty" it added.
Iraqi President Fouad Massoum on Dec. 5 also called the deployment of the Turkish troops inside Iraq near the northern city of Mosul "a violation of international norms and law."
A local Kurdish commander described the deployment as a routine rotation by Turkish trainers, but a subsequent statement by the KRG pointed to increased Turkish activity.
"The Turkish government has over the past few days sent necessary experts and equipment with the aim of expanding this camp" the statement said.