|Iraq urges end to Turkey PKK attacks||
Iraq has called for an end to the presence of Turkish military forces on its land, demanding that Turkey stop its attacks on members of the Kurdistan Workers Party (PKK) in northern Iraq.
“The cabinet decided to reject the presence of any foreign bases or forces on Iraqi land and to reject the entry of any foreign military forces into Iraqi land,” said Iraqi government spokesman Ali al-Dabbagh in a statement issued on Tuesday.
Dabbagh reiterated that the Turkish military action against the PKK members on Iraqi land “contradicts the principles of good neighborly relations.”
The Iraqi cabinet “recommends that parliament cancel or not extend any treaty signed in the past with any foreign state that allows the presence of foreign forces and military bases on Iraqi land or the entry of these forces,” the Iraqi government spokesman stated.
The remarks were made in response to a request by the Turkish government on Monday from its parliament to renew a mandate, expiring on October 17, that allows Turkish military strikes against the PKK in the semi-autonomous Kurdish region of Iraq.
The treaty in question was signed by former Iraqi dictator Saddam Hussein in 1995, allowing Turkish forces to have presence in the northern regions of Iraq to target the Kurdish group.
The military presence of Turkish forces and their crossing into Iraq “is a violation of Iraq’s sovereignty and security,” Dabbagh added.
Some analysts believe that Baghdad’s decision may be a reaction to Turkey’s refusal to extradite fugitive Iraqi Vice President Tariq al-Hashemi, who has been sentenced to death in absentia by an Iraqi court for running terror squads in Iraq.
Over the past months, Turkish military forces and the PKK have been involved in one of their heaviest clashes since the beginning of the Kurdish group’s armed opposition against Ankara.
In July, Baghdad warned Ankara against the “violation” of its territory and airspace by Turkish fighter jets and called on its foreign ministry to file a complaint with the UN Security Council over the issue.
(Source: Press TV)
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