Turkey, Iraq seek to improve bilateral relations

The Turkish and Iraqi governments are currently bidding to improve bilateral ties with a series of high-level visits.

Iraqi Foreign Minister Hoshyar Zebari is expected to arrive inAnkara on Oct. 25 to conduct a series of meetings with Turkish officials, including his Turkish counterpart Ahmet Davutoğlu, according to announcements made following Zebari’s talks yesterday with a visiting Turkish delegation, headed by the chairman of Parliament’s Foreign Relations Committee, Volkan Bozkır.

The details of Zebari’s visit were clarified during the delegation’s time in Iraq, though the itinerary is reportedly still being arranged. A one-on-one meeting with Davutoğlu, however, does seem likely, Anadolu Agency reported.

Bozkır not only met with high-level Iraqi officials, but also extended an invite from Turkish Prime Minister Recep Tayyip Erdoğan to his Iraqi counterpart Nouri al-Maliki, who is now expected to visit Turkey soon. Bozkır also said Turkish Parliament Speaker Cemil Çiçek and Foreign Minister Ahmet Davutoğlu were expected to arrive in Iraq soon to discuss bilateral relations.

Bozkır told reporters that everyone was looking forward to al-Maliki’s expected visit, adding that historic and social elements connected the two nations, and that deputies and lawmakers therefore had a responsibility to ensure such “love and closeness.”

During the Turkish delegation’s meetings, both sides expressed willingness for the development and normalization of relations on the political and economic levels, according to an official statement posted on the Iraqi Foreign Ministry website.

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