Turkish troops still in Iraq despite ultimatum from Baghdad to withdraw

Turkish troops still in Iraq despite ultimatum from Baghdad to withdraw
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By Seamus Kearney
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A deadline for Turkey to withdraw its troops from the north of Iraq expires today

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A deadline for Turkey to withdraw its troops from the north of Iraq expires today.

But despite Baghdad’s ultimatum to pull out within 48 hours, there are no signs that hundreds of Turkish troops will retreat.

Ankara says it is confident Iraq will come to accept the deployment, as part of efforts to fight ISIL militants.

Turkey’s Deputy Prime Minister Numan Kurtulmus told a media conference in Ankara: “Turkey is there to train soldiers against terrorism. But the Iraqi government has become highly sensitive.

“I reckon the Iraqi government will change its stance after receiving a letter from our Prime Minister and after ministers from the two countries hold meetings on this matter.”

ISIL took over the northern city of Mosul in June last year.

The Iraqi government maintains it never invited the Turkish force, but Ankara says they were welcomed to a military camp by local Kurdish authorities.

Baghdad says it will take its case to the UN if the troops remain.

Turkey says has duty to protect soldiers in Iraq after Baghdad ultimatum: https://t.co/cLwAsCRCZapic.twitter.com/IILifVp1Si

— Reuters World (@ReutersWorld) December 7, 2015

#Iraq tells #Turkey to withdraw troops https://t.co/acHHKpWZ4Vpic.twitter.com/JCATpg9q24

— Al Arabiya English (@AlArabiya_Eng) December 6, 2015

Turkish tank incursion into #Iraq poses problem for entire region
https://t.co/eJ09MV4JCM
#TurkeyInvasionpic.twitter.com/Tck6DvkqF4

— Sputnik (@SputnikInt) December 8, 2015

Iraq gives Turkey 48 hours to withdraw its military near Islamic State stronghold of Mosul https://t.co/5eKswMBiUj

— Wall Street Journal (@WSJ) December 6, 2015

Turkey backtracks on plans to send more troops into Iraq https://t.co/wmezoLW9aUpic.twitter.com/GmDprcD8Mv

— Bloomberg Business (@business) December 7, 2015

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