Turkey Stopped Troop Deployment as Bagdad Threatened to Refer to UNSC
Turkey will not continue to transfer its soldiers to the area next to the Daesh-controlled city of Mosul in northern Iraq, Reuters reported. The move was made after Baghdad threatened to turn to the UNSC within 48 hours, in case if Ankara failed to withdraw its forces from Iraq.
Turkish Prime Minister Ahmet Davutoglu responded to Iraqi Prime Minister Haider al-Abadi with a letter, promising not to deploy additional military contingents in the war-torn country, but ignored the request to withdraw troops that have been already deployed to the area.
“No further forces will be deployed to Bashiqa until concerns of the Iraqi government are overcome,” Davutoglu wrote in the letter as Reuters reported citing sources at the Turkish PM’s office.
Davutoglu also added that Turkey aimed to strengthen its ties with Iraq in the fight against Daesh, adding that “those who are disturbed by the cooperation of Turkey and Iraq and who want to end it should not be allowed to attain their goal.”
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Hundreds of Turkish troops were sent to the country’s military camp in Iraq’s Bashiqa region Thursday, in an event that Ankara proclaimed was a “routine rotation” to train Iraqi soldiers to combat Daesh, who had seized the nearby city of Mosul.
Later it turned out that Turkey had not coordinated the move with authorities in Baghdad, who then demanded forces’ withdrawal.
Reuters also reported that Washington was aware of Ankara’s intentions, but according to military officials the move was not a part of the US-led campaign; Sputnik reported.
Arab League condemns Turkish ‘intervention’ in N. Iraq
According to RT, the Arab League has condemned deployment of Turkish troops in northern Iraq, saying it amounts to “an intervention.” Iraq demands that Ankara withdraws its troops, saying it will go to the UN Security Council if they remain.
Nabil Elaraby, Secretary-General of the Arab league has condemned the deployment of Turkish troops in Northern Iraq calling it a “blatant intervention,” Al Youm El Sabea reports.
He said, however, that the Arab League members can do nothing but make a joint statement condemning the action.
Earlier this week, Turkey deployed over 100 troops equipped with tanks and artillery in the town of Bashiqa, 10 kilometers northeast of Mosul, which is a stronghold of the Islamic State terror group ISIS.