Turkey Sees Sharp Increase In Oil From Iran, While Iraq's Share Drops
05 October 2017, 12:15 | Isaac Mcdaniel
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President Erdogan said on August 21 that a joint military operation against the PKK in the Kandil Mountains and along the Iraq-Iran border was a possibility, although Iran's Islamic Revolutionary Guards Corps (IRGC) later denied any claims of joint operations.
On Sept. 25, Iraqis in Kurdish Regional Government (KRG)-held areas - and in several areas disputed between Baghdad and Erbil - voted on whether to declare independence from Iraq.
In a join presser after a closed-door meeting in the Saadabad Complex, Erdoğan said that "all regional matters were on the agenda and discussed" at the meeting. "We correspond with the central government in Iraq and as far as we are concerned, this referendum is illegitimate".
Both leaders also agreed to trade in their respective currencies; and Turkey said it planned to import more natural gas from Iran.
"We do not accept disintegration of the states in the region".
"Some leaders of Iraq's Kurdistan region have made erroneous decisions which must be corrected", Iran's President Hassan Rouhani said after talks with Erdogan, visiting Tehran for the first time since 2015.
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Gen. Mohammad Hossein Baqeri and Turkish Chief of General Staff Hulusi Akar announced the plans during a press conference in Tehran.
Erdogan, whose security forces have been embroiled in a decades-long battle with Kurdish separatists in southeast Turkey, repeated his accusation that Israel was behind the Iraqi Kurds' referendum. Putin, speaking during an energy forum in Moscow, also said that it was in no-one's interest to cut off oil supplies from Iraq's Kurdistan.
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. "During this process, our respective ministers, security forces and intelligence organizations are carrying out all kinds of work in the region", Erdoğan said.
Iran and Turkey have been rivals for centuries but have recently sought to forge a pragmatic relationship, with the Islamic Republic strongly supporting Erdogan after last year's failed coup.
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.
"The independence referendum in Iraq's Kurdistan is a sectarian plot by foreign countries and is rejected by both Tehran and Ankara", Rouhani told to journalists.
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