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Turkish PM Visits Iraq Amid Spat Over Unauthorized Troops

BAGHDAD (AP) -- Iraq's state TV says the Turkish Prime Minister has arrived in Baghdad in his first visit since the two governments quarreled over the presence of unauthorized Turkish troops in northern Iraq.

The Saturday report didn't give details on the schedule of Binali Yildirim's two-day visit. On his Twitter account, the Turkish Ambassador to Baghdad, Faruk Kaymakci, said that, "We hope that his visit will open a new chapter in Turkey-Iraq relations."

The presence of some 500 Turkish troops in the Bashiqa region, northeast of Mosul has stirred tension with Baghdad since late last year. Iraq says they are in "blatant violation" of Iraqi sovereignty and had demanded their withdrawal. Turkey says the troops were invited by Iraqi forces and has ignored the calls.


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