Extending state of emergency, road map against KRG to be discussed in top security meeting

DAILY SABAH
ANKARA
Published 15.10.2017 22:09

The National Security Council (MGK) will convene under the chairmanship of President Recep Tayyip Erdoğan today in the Beştepe Presidential Complex with a heavy agenda, including the extension of the state of emergency and the roadmap against the Kurdistan Regional Government's (KRG) referendum.

Justice and Development Party (AK Party) Group Deputy Chairman Mustafa Elitaş announced that extending the state of emergency for three more months will be recommended in the MGK meeting. Following the recommendation, the decision will be signed in the Cabinet and sent to Parliament to be voted on for the fifth time after the meetings before Oct. 19.

Steps to be taken against the KRG, unless it cancels the referendum, will also be discussed in the meeting. Ankara has repeatedly called for the cancellation of the KRG referendum that was held Sept. 25 on the grounds that it will have bad implications for the greater region.

A road map, including various options such as closing the Habur Border Gate, has been prepared. According to the road map, one option is to hand over the Ibrahim Halil gate, which is across from Habur, to the Iraqi central government by ejecting the peshmerga. Following this, with the cooperation of the Iraqi central government, a corridor will be opened from Ovaköy to Tal Afar.

Another option is to keep the Habur gate open, but have vehicles use the border security road to reach Ovaköy. The road will be broadened and a bridge will be built in Ovaköy to provide transition to Tal Afar. To provide security for vehicles, cooperation with the Iraqi central government will be necessary.

The last option is to open a new border gate in Ovaköy, which will require building new roads. Regarding the closing of the Habur Border Gate, experts say that Turkey should take steps in coordination with Iran so it does not lose its trade market with the country.

Following the last MGK meeting that took place on Sept. 22, Ankara had announced its decisions in relation to the KRG's referendum, stressing that the referendum was illegal and unacceptable.

Ankara underlined that the diverse structure of Iraq could only be sustained with territorial integrity and that it was inevitable that this referendum would cause grave results for the region. If the KRG pushes forward with its decision, Turkey announced that it will keep its rights reserved ensuing bilateral and international agreements.

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