Iran, Turkey coordinate military response to Kurdish independence vote

Turkey's Chief of General Staff, Iranian counterpart highlight common stance amid regional threats
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05 October, 2017

Ghasemi also says that the objective of Erdogan's trip is not only discussions on bilateral relations, but also about regional issues, including the Kurdish referendum.

Tanjug is reporting this, citing Reuters, and adding that Erdogan said his country had already taken "some measures in coordination with the Iraqi central government (and Iran)". Under presidency of two countries, fourth meeting of Turkish-Iranian high-level co-operation Council will be held.

He stressed the importance of "protecting national security" for Iran and Turkey, adding that "no country takes its national security lightly and would allow emotions of others to create mayhem...".

Iran and Turkey have threatened to join Baghdad in imposing economic sanctions on Iraqi Kurdistan, as the country leaders Hasan Rouhani and Recep Tayyip Erdogan agreed to support not changing Iraq's borders.

On Sunday, Turkish armed forces chief of staff Gen Hulusi Akar arrived in Tehran.

He said Ankara and Tehran would not recognise the referendum.

Turkish President and Iranian counterpart say the two states to co-operate more over regional crises, such as Iraq and Syria. He also said that de-escalation zones were very important for Turkey.

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Last week, the Iranian Army and the Islamic Revolution Guards Corps (IRGC) staged joint military drills along the country's western border areas.

The two governments fear the secession of Iraq's Kurds would stoke separatist sentiment among their own large Kurdish minorities and are eager to work together with the federal government in Baghdad to block it.

Baghdad imposed a ban on all worldwide flights to Kurdish airports on Friday, while Tehran has ordered a halt to all trade in fuel products with Iraqi Kurdistan.

Iran's Supreme Leader has described Kurdistan's independence referendum as an act of "treason" that must be confronted.

Meanwhile, Iraqi prime minister Haider Al Abadi headed to France on Wednesday to hold talks with French president Emmanuel Macron on terrorism and bilateral relations.

Both presidents drew particular attention to the regional developments in Iraq after the KRG independence referendum on September 25, both asserting that the referendum was illegitimate and null and that Iraq's territorial integrity is important for regional stability.

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