Turkey says Iraq sees need to eliminate Kurdish PKK militia

Turkish President Tayyip Erdogan said in remarks published on Tuesday he believed Iraq saw the need to eliminate the Kurdish PKK militia and had the will to do so, adding Ankara wanted Baghdad's support in that battle.

Erdogan was speaking after talks in Baghdad and Erbil on Monday, the first visit by a Turkish leader to Iraq since 2011, following years of tensions as Ankara carried out cross-border attacks on PKK militants based in northern Iraq.

Ties between the neighbours were entering a new phase, Erdogan said, after they agreed to cooperate against militants, boost economic ties via a new corridor and consider Iraq’s needs for access to scarce water.

Speaking to reporters on his flight back from Iraq, Erdogan said Turkey’s battle with terrorism would continue in line with international law, and added he hoped to see concrete results of Baghdad labeling the PKK a “banned organisation” last month.

Read moreIraq and Turkey to elevate security and economic ties after Erdogan's visit

“Therefore, we need to take cautious steps. With evaluations to be held in that direction, it may be possible to find common ground,” he said.


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