Turkey ‘ready to cooperate with Iraq’ against Kurdish militants

Turkish soldiers conduct military exercises near the Habur crossing gate between Turkey and Iraq on September 27, 2017.

:: Turkey is ready to cooperate fully with the central Iraqi government to end the presence of the outlawed Kurdish militant group PKK in Iraq, the foreign ministry said on Monday.

In a statement, the ministry also said Ankara would stand by Baghdad to provide peace and stability in the country, as Iraqi forces captured several positions near Kirkuk from Kurdish fighters, following Kurdish northern Iraq’s independence referendum last month.

The Iraqi government accused Kurdish authorities on Sunday of bringing fighters from Turkey’s separatist Kurdistan Workers Party (PKK) to the disputed oil-rich city of Kirkuk and said it considered the move a “declaration of war”.

Meanwhile, an aide to Kurdistan region President Barzani has denied any PKK presence in Kirkuk.

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