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    Turkey mulls three-way talks with Iraq, United States to curb PKK

    HotNewsTurkey with wires
    20.10.2008 - 15:06 | Son Güncelleme:

    Turkey is considering three-way consultations with Iraq and the United States for fresh measures to purge PKK bases in neighboring Iraq, Foreign Minister Ali Babacan said Monday.

    The talks, proposed by Iraqi President Jalal Talabani, "could be important with respect to sharing intelligence and coordinating military activity," Babacan told a joint press conference with visiting Spanish counterpart Miguel Angel Moratinos. 

    "We have passed an important threshold and my colleagues are now having talks with officials on various levels at the local administration in the north of Iraq," he was quoted by AFP as saying.

    Turkey, provided with intelligence by the United States, has stepped up its campaign to crackdown on the PKK, after the terror organization increased its attacks on Turkish soldiers, as well as civilians.

    Turkey, which accuses its southern neighbor of failing to halt violence from the terror organization, PKK, has also intensified its direct contacts with Iraqi officials to discuss the possible measures that can be taken in the fight against the PKK.

    "However, this trilateral mechanism is not a format that can substitute bilateral mechanisms Turkey is separately carrying out with the United States and Iraq," Babacan added.

    Babacan also said he wants Turkish-mediated indirect talks between Syria and Israel to resume.

    Turkey’s foreign minister said he hopes that Israel will decide to resume meetings once a new government has been established.

    "There has been progress and both sides are happy about the point they have reached," he said.

    Israeli Defense Minister Ehud Barak has said, however, that negotiations with Syria and the Palestinians have made little progress and Israel is considering a Saudi plan offering peace with the Arab world in exchange for the return of Arab lands captured in 1967.

    Israel and Syria have held four rounds of talks in Istanbul.



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