Arab League to discuss Turkish forces in Iraq

The regional organizations' foreign minister to meet over Turkish troops deployment near Mosul

Arab League to discuss Turkish forces in Iraq

World Bulletin / News Desk

The Arab League said Wednesday it will hold an extraordinary meeting of its foreign ministers next week to discuss Turkeys deployment of forces in Iraq condemned by Baghdad as an illegal incursion.

Soldiers and tanks were sent to a military camp in northern Iraq earlier this month, a move Ankara said was necessary to protect forces carrying out training in the fight against the ISIL group.

The meeting will be held on December 24 at the request of Iraq, the Cairo-based body's deputy chief, Ahmed Ben Heli, told reporters.

On Tuesday, Baghdad demanded the "complete withdrawal" of Turkish forces from its territory.

Turkish and Iraqi officials said forces and equipment were withdrawn Monday, but the trainers apparently remained, and Ankara has other military sites within northern Iraq's autonomous Kurdish region.

Turkish Prime Minister Ahmet Davutoglu said Monday that "there has been a shifting of the (military) forces, and that Ankara did "what was necessary to do from a military point of view".

But Foreign Minister Mevlut Cavusoglu indicated that forces remained at the training site, saying the number of troops there and at other locations "may increase or decrease as required".

Iraq's autonomous Kurdish region has close ties with Ankara and is unlikely to back Baghdad in its efforts to see the Turkish forces go home.

Güncelleme Tarihi: 16 Aralık 2015, 16:11