The Iraqi foreign ministry has summoned the Turkish ambassador on Thursday to protest the continued presence of Turkish troops in Bashiqa camp after Turkish officials refused withdrawing from city to fight against Daish, a ministry spokesman said.
Ankara maintains an estimated 2,000 troops in Iraq, around 500 of them in the Bashiqa camp training local fighters who were sent there at the request of Iraqi Prime Minister Haider al-Abadi.
Even though the Iraqi central government said that Turkish military units stationed in the Bashiqa camp near Mosul were "occupying forces" and "should be immediately withdrawn," footage from a 2014 press conference resurfaced proving that Turkey and Iraq had originally agreed to collaborate in the fight against the Daish terrorist group. In the video, Abadi told the press conference, with then Prime Minister Ahmet Davutoğlu, that his government demanded "military, intelligence, arms and training support" from Turkey and help from "every neighboring country."
Earlier this week, Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdoğan said that Turkey will participate in coalition to fight against Daish in Iraq.
Erdoğan also said that Turkish Armed Forces (TSK) will not take directions from the Iraqi prime minister, saying that Turkish army will do what is necessary in Mosul.
And Prime Minister Binali Yildirim also said last week that the country's forces would stay "no matter what the Iraqi government in Baghdad says."
In mid-2014, Daish captured Mosul in Iraq's northern Nineveh province, along with vast swathes of territory in the country's northern and western regions. While recent months have seen the Iraqi army and its allies retake much territory, the terrorist group remains in firm control of Mosul, which Iraqi officials have vowed to recapture by the end of the year.
The operation on Mosul will be conducted by nearly 15,000 Iraqi security and local forces; it will also be supported by the U.S. and Kurdish peshmerga forces for logistical purposes. Meanwhile, the U.S.-led coalition forces are also expected to support the operation from the air.
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