Turkey, Iran ‘glad’ to work together to support Iraq’s territorial integrity

ERBIL, Kurdistan Region – Turkey and Iran have pledged to take “necessary steps” and to stand together against violations of the territorial integrity of Iraq.

Iranian First Vice President Eshaq Jahangiri and Turkish Prime Minister Binali Yildirim spoke at a press conference after a meeting in Ankara on Thursday.

“We are glad about the increasing cooperation on this issue,” Yıldırım said, according to Turkish Hurriyet Daily News.

The meeting comes after Iraqi forces and Iranian-backed militiamen from Hashd al-Shaabi entered disputed or Kurdistani areas in northern Iraq.

Yildirim explained Turkey and Iran pledged to take “necessary steps” in wake of the events following the Kurdistan Region’s independence referendum on September 25. He said the move to hold the vote was a result of “personal ambitions and future quests of the administrators in the region.”

He added that “it is difficult for those who cause this adventure to exist in the region and to continue their lives as leaders,” while calling for steps to reduce harm.

Jahangiri called the referendum “unsuccessful” and “void,” Hurriyet reported, adding that the Iraqi government regained lands the Kurds had taken control of during the war with ISIS.

The two also spoke of bilateral relations, with the Iranian vice president saying Tehran can increase its export of oil, highlighting a previous agreement about trading in local currencies.

Also on Thursday, Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan hinted that Turkey could give Baghdad control of the border gates with the Kurdistan Region if the central government meets “all the needs of the people under the northern Iraqi administration.”

Iran closed its three official border crossings with the Kurdistan Region on Sunday just ahead of Baghdad’s incursions into the disputed territories. Some semi-official border crossings were still functioning.


Source    www.rudaw.net


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