Iraq summons Turkish Envoy over Erdogan’s remarks on Hashd Al-Shaabi

Iraq summons Turkish Envoy over Erdogan's remarks on Hashd Al-Shaabi
Fatih Yildiz, Turkish Ambassador to Iraq.

Baghdad (BasNews) Iraqi Foreign Minister summoned the Turkish ambassador to Baghdad after an interview in which the President of Turkey Recep Tayyip Erdogan used the word “terrorist” to describe an Iraqi parliamentary organization.

The Spokesperson for the Foreign Ministry of Iraq, Ahmad Jamal, said on Friday that the Iraqi foreign ministry decided to summon the Turkish ambassador to hand him a formal protest note regarding recent remarks made by the Turkish president Erdogan on the Iraqi government-backed Hashd al-Shaabi, Hurriyet Daily reported.

Fatih Yildiz has been the Turkish ambassador to Baghdad since January this year.

In a recent interview, Erdogan described the Shi’ite militia backed by the Iraqi government as “terrorist.” The president suggested that in the fight against the so-called Islamic State (IS) the Iraqi government does not consider Hashd al-Shaabi as a terrorist organization, but for him it is important who backs the militia, which Turkey recognizes as a terrorist organization.

Ankara continues trying to retain its influence in northern Iraq, whereas the Hashd al-Shaabi has increased its presence in that area, which brings concerns regarding any possible future clashes between Iran and Turkey through their proxies.

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