Shiita cleric Muqtada al-Sadr has called on Baghdad to terminate its agreements with Ankara that allow military detachments of the latter to cross Turkey’s southern border into the Kurdistan Region and Iraq on grounds they are fighting the Kurdistan Workers’ Party (PKK).
In his tweets on Thursday, Sadr said “we condemn and denounce…Turkish bombardments of Iraqi territory, even if they are based on agreements; they are poor agreements and are meaningless.”
He added that Baghdad should prioritize the country’s sovereignty and “cancel the agreements,” work on ones that allow the bombing of “terrorists” not the “opposition.”
The remarks came as Turkish forces stationed over their southern border intensified air raids and ground operations against alleged PKK positions since Ankara’s “Operation Claw” started in late May.
On Wednesday, fighter jets struck a petrol station and a water project in the town of Amadiya (Amedi) in Duhok province.
In 2018, Turkey carried out military operations against PKK fighters based within the Kurdistan Region with continued regularity. Turkish forces have crossed into the region up to 20 kilometers deep in some areas to target the guerilla group, and bombardment from Turkish jets occasionally results in the death of Kurdish civilians unaffiliated to the PKK.
Each of Turkey, the United States, and the European Union had labelled the PKK as a “terrorist” group.