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Turkish military says Baghdad to join drill on Turkey’s northern Iraq border

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The Turkish Armed Forces (TSK) issued a press release on Monday saying that the Iraqi Armed Forces will join in drills in the Silopi/Habur area on the Turkish-Iraqi border amid tensions in the region over a referendum for independence held by the Kurdistan Regional Government (KRG) on Monday.

According to the press release, soldiers from the Iraqi Armed Forces arrived in Turkey on Monday evening and would join in the maneuvers from Tuesday.

Meanwhile, Iraq’s defense ministry also announced its soldiers had gone to Turkey to take part in the drill on the northern Iraq border.

Despite warnings from the Baghdad administration and abroad, including from Ankara and Washington, the KRG held a referendum on Monday for a separate Kurdistan state in northern Iraq.

Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdoğan said the Turkish armed forces could suddenly launch an operation one night in the region.

The Turkish Foreign Ministry on Monday issued a press release describing the independence referendum as “null” and “void” and said that Turkey does not recognize the referendum, which lacks international legitimacy.

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