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Turkey reissues travel warning for Iraq over Mosul operation

DAILY SABAH
ISTANBUL
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Smoke rises from clashes at Bartila in the east of Mosul during clashes with Daesh militants, Iraq, October 18, 2016. (REUTERS Photo)
Smoke rises from clashes at Bartila in the east of Mosul during clashes with Daesh militants, Iraq, October 18, 2016. (REUTERS Photo)

Turkey has urged its citizens to be careful when traveling to Iraq after the operation to retake Mosul from Daesh was launched on Monday.

In a statement, the Foreign Ministry said it was warning Turkish citizens once again against traveling to Iraq as the operation to retake Mosul from Daesh terrorists has worsened the country's already fragile security situation.

The statement said citizens could be a target of various circles who want to conduct terror activities to harm Turkey's interests in the country.

The advice applies to all of Iraq except the provinces of Dohuk, Erbil and Sulaymaniyah, which are controlled by the Iraqi Kurdish Regional Government.

Turkey issued its first travel warning for Iraq last year on December 15.

Iraqi forces, including Peshmerga, began the long-anticipated offensive to recapture the city early Monday.

The defeat of Daesh in Mosul, its first urban stronghold, could be a major turning point in the fight against the extremist group. The city has long been featured prominently in its propaganda as Daesh seeks to portray itself as a state.

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