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Iraq summons Turkish ambassador over Erdogan’s remarks

Turkish President Erdogan delivers a speech during a ceremony at Bestepe National Congress And Culture Centre in Ankara on October 18, 2016. [Raşit Aydoğan/Anadolu]
Image of Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan [Raşit Aydoğan/Anadolu]

Iraq’s foreign ministry has summoned the Turkish ambassador to Baghdad to hand him an official letter of protest at recent remarks made by Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan against the Iraqi Popular Mobilisation Forces (PMF), Russia Today (RT) reported today.

Image of militants raising the Iraq and Popular Mobilisation Forces (PMF) flag [Mahmoud Hosseini/Wikipedia]

Image of militants raising the Iraq and Popular Mobilisation Forces (PMF) flag [Mahmoud Hosseini/Wikipedia]

“The foreign ministry has decided to summon the Turkish ambassador in Baghdad to hand him a formal protest note regarding recent remarks by the Turkish president on the Hashed Al-Shaabi [Popular Mobilisation],” the ministry’s spokesperson, Ahmad Jamal, said in an official statement.

In an interview with Al Jazeera on Wednesday, Erdogan referenced to the PMF as a “terrorist organisation” which is part of “Iran’s Persian expansion policy”.

“Who are Al-Hashd Al-Shaabi? Who is backing them? The Iraqi parliament supports Al-Hashd Al-Shaabi, but, honestly, they are a terrorist organisation,” Erdogan said during the interview.

PMF spokesman, Ahmed Al-Assadi, said earlier today that Erdogan’s claims represented a “flagrant intervention” in Iraq’s affairs and “a violation against an Iraqi security institution recognised by the parliament and the state.”

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