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Turkey is closely monitoring developments in the key Iraqi city of Kirkuk, and the protection of Turkmen rights there carries great importance for the Turkish government, said Turkey’s defence chief on Monday.
Axar.az reports that Kirkuk, a onetime Ottoman holding, is an important Iraqi city with a large ethnic Turkmen population. Some of the city’s Turkmen and Arab residents fear that military cooperation between Baghdad and Iraq's Kurdish Regional Government (KRG) could lead to the deployment of Kurdish Peshmerga in Kirkuk, which lies outside the KRG region. Turkey has long opposed efforts to artificially alter the city’s ethnic makeup.
In a video conference, National Defense Minister Hulusi Akar also said Turkey's fight against terrorism is continuing with determination despite difficult weather and terrain, and that terrorism is collapsing.
The Turkish Armed Forces will destroy all terror bases and hideouts, he vowed, adding that the counter-terrorism operations will continue until the last terrorist is neutralized.
2021.12.21 / 13:50