Turkey, Iraq launch joint drill after Kurdish referendum

Source: Xinhua| 2017-09-26 05:26:06|Editor: yan
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ANKARA, Sept. 25 (Xinhua) -- Iraqi soldiers have arrived in Turkey late Monday to join a military exercise on the Turkish-Iraqi border, Turkish Armed Forces said in a written statement.

Troops from Iraqi army will join the third phase of the drill which will start on Tuesday in the Habur border gate on the Turkish-Iraqi border in Silopi district of Sirnak province, read the statement.

Nearly 25 soldiers from Iraqi army's special forces have traveled to Turkey by AC 130 aircraft and they were taken to Silopi district by Turkish army's vehicles, a Turkish military source told Xinhua on condition of anonymity.

Turkey launched the drill a week ago as a showoff against the Iraqi Kurdistan Regional Government that held a referendum on Monday to seek independence of the semi-autonomous Kurdish region from Iraq.

Iraq, Turkey, Iran and the United States have all voiced against the referendum, saying it would threaten the integrity of Iraq and further destabilize the region.

The Turkish Armed Forces have been taking a military drill near the Turkish-Iraqi border since Sept. 18, with the participation of tanks and heavy military vehicles.