Iraq’s armed forces have instructions to prevent “foreign fighters” from launching cross-border attacks on Turkey, Iraqi Prime Minister Haider Al-Abadi told his Turkish counterpart, Binali Yildirim.
Turkish President Tayyip Erdogan said on Monday that Turkey’s intelligence chief would meet an Iraqi official to discuss an Iraqi military operation in Sinjar, a region of Iraq bordering on Turkey, where Ankara says Kurdish militants have established a base.
Erdogan also said Turkey’s would do “what is necessary” if the Iraqi operation in Sinjar failed. The Kurdistan Workers Party (PKK) has waged an insurgency against the Turkish state for decades. President Tayyip Erdogan said last week they were creating a new base in Sinjar, and that Turkish forces would attack it if necessary.
Sources in northern Iraq said on Friday the PKK would withdraw from Sinjar, where it gained a foothold in 2014 after coming to the aid of the Yazidi minority community, who were under attack by Daesh militants. The PKK, considered a terrorist organization by Turkey, the European Union and the United States, has for decades been based in Iraq’s Qandil mountain range, near the border with Iran.