Turkey, Iraq to deepen support against terror groups

January 3, 2019
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Turkey's President Recep Tayyip Erdogan, right, and Iraq's President Barham Salih speak to the media after their talks in Ankara, Turkey, Thursday, Jan. 3, 2019. The two expected to discus bilateral and regional issues, including Syria. (AP Photo/Burhan Ozbilici)

ANKARA, Turkey (AP) — Turkey’s president has reaffirmed support for Iraq’s reconstruction following the end of the fight against the Islamic State group and said the two countries would deepen cooperation against terror groups.

Speaking at a joint news conference with Iraq’s newly elected president Thursday, Recep Tayyip Erdogan said Turkey would help Iraq rebuild areas harmed by the conflict and support the country’s infrastructure and development projects.

Turkey is uneasy over the outlawed Kurdish rebels’ presence in northern Iraq. Baghdad, meanwhile, is concerned by Turkish military offensives against the rebels on its territory.

Iraq’s President Barham Salih welcomed a Turkish decision to send special envoy to Iraq to discuss water shortages in the country, partly blamed on Turkey which has stopped up the Tigris and Euphrates rivers as it builds dams.

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