Turkey has decided in talks with Iraqi officials to “reorganise” its military personnel at the Bashiqa camp near the northern Iraqi city of Mosul, the prime minister’s office said on Friday, after a dispute emerged with Baghdad over the deployment.
Iraq demanded last weekend that Turkey immediately withdraw hundreds of troops sent recently to the camp, near the Islamic State-controlled city of Mosul, saying they had entered Iraqi territory without the knowledge of Baghdad.
Turkey’s Foreign Ministry Undersecretary Feridun Sinirlioglu and National Intelligence Agency (MIT) head Hakan Fidan visited Baghdad on Thursday for talks with Iraqi Prime Minister Haider al-Abadi on the issue.
“Taking into account the Iraqi government’s sensitivity, the decision was taken to reorganise the military personnel in the protection force at the Bashiqa camp,” Prime Minister Ahmet Davutoglu’s office said in a statement.
It did not say what the troop reorganisation would involve, but said agreement was reached to start work on creating mechanisms to deepen cooperation with the Iraqi government on security issues.
Davutoglu said on Wednesday the soldiers were sent to northern Iraq after a threat from Islamic State militants to Turkish military trainers in the area increased.