Iraq retakes Habur crossing with Turkey

Author : Mircea Birca | Wednesday, November 1, 2017
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Iraqi authorities were handed on Tuesday control of the main land border crossing between Turkey and the Iraqi Kurdistan Region, announced three Iraqi officials.

One of the officials released photos of the Iraqi flag as it was being raised above the border gate. Iraqi and Turkish forces have been deployed in the area and Turkish flags were also raised there.

Ali Abdullah of the border police said that the border is officially under the complete control of the Iraqi government.

Authorities in Kurdistan denied however that the portal was handed over to Iraq.

An official in Irbil said that the negotiations are still ongoing over the issue.

Iraq’s border with Turkey lies completely within the semi-autonomous Kurdish region.

Iraq had demanded that it assume control of all land borders soon after Kurdistan held an independence referendum on September 25. Baghdad and Ankara had both rejected the vote.

The Iraqi government carried out a lightening military campaign earlier in October in retaliation to the referendum. It succeeded in retaking regions the Kurds had gained in their battle against ISIS over the past three years.

Turkish Prime Minister Binali Yildirim had meanwhile declared that control of the Habur border crossing had been handed to the Iraqi government.

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