Iraqi Defense Ministry: Turkish forces breached border by 105 km
As the Iraqi Parliament convened on Saturday to discuss the situation surrounding a recent artillery attack that killed civilians in Kurdistan Region of Iraq (KRI), a report by the Iraqi Defense Ministry was read in the session.
The report states that Turkish forces breached Iraqi borders in their ongoing operations by 105 km, setting up five military bases and over a hundred military outposts in Iraqi territories.
MP Sherwan Dubardani told Kurdish news outlet Rudaw that the Defense Ministry report also indicated that over 4,000 Turkish troops are currently deployed in Iraq.
Nine Arab tourists were killed in the attack on 20 July in Duhok province, which according to Iraqi government officials was carried out by Turkish forces, and 23 were injured.
While Turkish authorities denied involvement in the attack and blamed the Kurdistan Workers' Party (PKK), Iraqi Ministry of Foreign Affairs said Thursday that Turkey's denial of responsibility for the attack was a "black joke."
Spokesperson for the Ministry said on Friday that they have evidence showing that Turkish Forces perpetrated the deadly attack.
The Ministry announced on Saturday that the Iraqi chargé d’affaires in Ankara had been recalled to Baghdad, and they sent a letter of complaint to the United Nations Security Council and requested that "an emergency session is held to discuss the Turkish aggression."
Turkish military base in Bashiqa
One of the Turkish military bases set up deep in Iraqi soil is the Bashiqa base near Mosul. Turkey has been operating the base since 2015, when Turkish troops were deployed in the area allegedly for training Iraqi forces in their fight against the Islamic State (ISIS).
Recently civilian residents were targeted 13 July in the town of Bashiqa by fire from Turkish helicopters. The attack resulted in damage but no casualties.
Some 150 Turkish troops are currently present in the base.