Iraq urges Turkey not to offer military assistance to U.S.
Iraq warned Turkey that it would no longer consider it a friendly nation if US warplanes used Turkish bases for a military strike against Baghdad.
"Absolutely not," Iraqi Deputy Prime Minister Aziz replied when asked by reporters if Turkey would still be seen as an ally if US planes used its airbases to attack Iraq.
Aziz, who was speaking after meeting Prime Minister Bulent Ecevit, added however: "Turkey's interests will not allow it to let the US threaten a friendly and neighboring nation." He said he was "very much pleased" with his talks with Ecevit.
On his part, Ecevit renewed Turkey's objections to military intervention in Iraq in an interview published Tuesday by Hurriyet newspaper.
Asked if Turkey would allow the US to use Turkish bases for an attack, Ecevit said: "Our position is that there is no need for a military operation against Iraq. We are saying this would severely harm Turkey."
In the interview , Ecevit accused Washinton and other western states of encouraging independence moves by the Iraqi Kurds, which, he said, worked against US efforts to win Turkey's support against Iraq. (Albawaba.com)
© 2002 Al Bawaba (www.albawaba.com)