UPDATE - PKK terror group to be eliminated from Iraq: Turkish foreign minister

UPDATE - PKK terror group to be eliminated from Iraq: Turkish foreign minister

Fidan thanks KRG Prime Minister Barzani for collaboration with Türkiye in fight against terrorism


By Muhammed Enes Calli and Diyar Guldogan

ISTANBUL / ANKARA (AA) — The PKK terror group will be eliminated from Iraq, Turkish Foreign Minister Hakan Fidan said on Thursday.

"The PKK terrorist group is currently hiding within the territories of Iraq. Hopefully, we will clear this virus from Iraq together," Fidan said at a news press conference with Masrour Barzani, prime minister of Iraq's Kurdish Regional Government (KRG), in the KRG's capital Erbil.

Underlining that there is "much work to be done to overcome terrorism," Fidan said he saw that both Iraq's central government in Baghdad and the KRG were determined to rid the country of the PKK terrorist organization.

"I especially want to thank him (Barzani) for their collaboration with Türkiye in the fight against terrorism."

He added that Erbil has consistently remained a secure and stable city during Iraq's challenging years.

For his part, ​​​​​​​Barzani said important topics were discussed during their meeting.

Vowing not to "allow turmoil," he said the KRG would maintain ties with Türkiye, as well as its "fight against every kind of terrorism".

Barzani added that he exchanged with Fidan views on economic issues, including how to further develop bilateral ties and resolve problems.

Later on Thursday, Fidan separately met with Nechirvan Barzani, president of the KRG, former president of the KRG Masoud Barzani, and Qubad Talabani, deputy prime minister of the KRG.

He also visited Erbil branch of the Iraqi Turkmen Front.

On his three-day visit to Türkiye's southern neighbor, Fidan also met Iraqi President Abdul Latif Rashid, Prime Minister Mohammed Shia al-Sudani, his Iraqi counterpart Fuad Hussein, and Iraqi Sovereignty Alliance Leader Khamis al-Khanjar in the capital Baghdad.

- Energy cooperation

Turkish Energy and Natural Resources Minister Alparslan Bayraktar also visited Erbil on Thursday to discuss current issues, especially cooperation in the field of energy.

"With the Iraqi Kurdish Regional Government, we aim to implement many projects that will contribute to our security of supply in all fields of energy, from oil to natural gas," Bayraktar said on X, the social media platform formerly known as Twitter.

His remarks came after meeting with Prime Minister Barzani.

Barzani, for his part, said he had "fruitful exchange" with Bayraktar.

"We agreed on the importance of resuming oil exports from the Kurdistan Region through Ceyhan. We also discussed additional ways to increase bilateral trade with Türkiye, including energy cooperation," he said.

On Wednesday, Bayraktar met Iraqi Deputy Minister for Energy Affairs and Minister of Oil Hayan Abdul-Ghani in the Turkish capita Ankara to discuss a broad range of bilateral and regional issues, including the Iraq-Türkiye crude oil pipeline.

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