Turkey says Iran supports its north Iraq military operation

Turkish Defence Minister Nurettin Canikli said on Tuesday that Iran fully supported Turkey’s military offensive against Kurdish Worker’s Party (PKK) fighters in northern Iraq and said Turkish troops would remain in the region until it is cleared of militants, state-run Anadolu news agency reported.

Turkey says it has launched a cross-border offensive into the Qandil and Sinjar regions of northern Iraq against bases of the PKK, which has been fighting for Kurdish self-rule in Turkey since 1984. Turkey, the United States and the European Union all list the PKK as a terrorist organisation.

Canikli said Iran, which also faces Kurdish insurgent groups, had “very clearly” expressed its support for Turkey’s operations in northern Iraq.

The PKK has promised an escalation of violence inside Turkey this summer.