Iraqi leaders are in Turkey to convince Ankara not to launch cross-border raids against Kurdish fighters. Turkey has said its patience has run out, but Iraqi’s Vice President, Tariq al-Hashemi, wants more time. “Turkey is in a difficult situation. We understand the anger of Turkish people, the government concerning terrorism activities across the border. We have much sympathy.”
The United States has also urged restraint fearing further unrest in the region if NATO’s second largest army moves into mainly Kurdish northern Iraq. Turkey is now awaiting parliament’s approval to hunt down some 3,000 Kurdistan Workers Party (PKK) members.
But Prime Minister Recep Tayyip Erdogan says that does not mean an immediate incursion will follow. Parliament will debate the motion on Wednesday. It is expected to pass easily, given the ruling AK Party’s large majority and strong support for military action from the main opposition parties.