Tuesday, December 8, 2015

Ummm...I Spoke Too Soon: "Baghdad ultimatum to Ankara expires, Moscow to discuss Turkish military invasion at UN Security Council"

In yesterday's "Russia + Turkey + ISIS + Iran + the U.S. = Nasty" I said "...By the way, Erdogan blinked, the tanks are moving back across the border."
Though based on statements from the Turkish government, that was incorrect.
Regret the error.

This is getting serious and it appears as though Turkey is playing a much deeper game than the simple greed of buying cheap ISIS oil.

First up RT:
The Iraqi PM has called on NATO to intervene shortly after the deadline of a Baghdad-issued ultimatum demanding that Turkish troops leave its territory expired. Ankara has refused to withdraw.

Iraq “is incumbent upon NATO to use its powers to urge Turkey to withdraw immediately from Iraqi territory,” a statement posted on Iraqi Prime Minister Haider al-Abadi's website said on Tuesday.

The statement was made after the Baghdad government's 48-hour deadline for Turkish withdrawal expired. Al-Abadi has already spoken with NATO Secretary General Jens Stoltenberg by telephone regarding the matter, the statement added, saying that the PM "reiterated during the call that these forces are present without the knowledge and consent of the Iraqi government."

Meanwhile, Russia intends to bring up Ankara's invasion of northern Iraq at the UN Security Council on Thursday.

“The issue will be raised at a closed-door meeting,” TASS cited a diplomatic source within the organization as saying. The source also dismissed earlier reports that Moscow was going to call a separate UNSC meeting.

The Russian Foreign Ministry has expressed grave concern over reports of the US-led coalition’s missile airstrike on the Syrian Army base near Ayyash in the Deir ez-Zor province, which killed three Syrian soldiers, as well as an airstrike in Al-Hasakah Governorate that resulted in multiple civilian casualties. 
“Generally, these facts serve proof that the situation on the frontline with Islamic State is heating up,” the Foreign Ministry’s Information and Press Department acknowledged.

“An additional and extremely dangerous factor promoting international tensions is the unlawful presence of the Turkish armed forces on Iraqi territory near the city of Mosul, which arrived there without a request and approval of the legitimate government of Iraq,” the Russian Foreign Ministry said in a statement.

“We consider this [military] presence unacceptable,” the statement says, adding that violation of international law principles, such as respect towards other states' sovereignty is "at the core of the emerging problems."...MORE
And from ZeroHedge the hilarious side-note that "It's all a misunderstanding, No, really, Iraq did give permission for Turkey to cross the border, Baghdad must have simply forgotten":

Turkey Refuses To Withdraw Troops From Iraq, Threatens To Slap Sanctions On Russia
Last Friday, Turkey invaded Iraq.

That sounds more dramatic than it actually was. Turkey sent around 150 soldiers and two dozens tanks to Bashiqa, just northeast of Mosul in what Ankara described as an effort to replace an existing contingent of around 90 troops that have supposedly been on a “training” mission with the Peshmerga for the better part of two years.

As we documented over the weekend, this is hardly the first time the Turks have entered the country.

However, the circumstances are quite different this time around. That is, this isn't a anti-terror mission aimed at tracking the PKK. Over the weekend, we asked if Turkey was simply trying to protect lucrative oil smuggling routes run by both ISIS and the KRG. On Sunday, an angry Iraq gave Ankara 48 hours to withdraw the troops - or else.

Ok, or else what? Or else Iran’s Shiite militias will hunt them down and kill them according to a statement from Kata'ib Sayyid al-Shuhada. On top of that, at least one influential Shiite politician (the infamous Moktada al-Sadr-linked Hakim al-Zamili) wants PM Abadi to appeal to Moscow for “direct military intervention.”

Baghdad is also set to appeal to the Security Council. But when it comes to being belligerent, Erdogan is right up there with the best of them, which is why we weren’t at all surprised to learn that Turkey is refusing to pull its troops out of Iraq. On Tuesday, the Turkish foreign ministry said that while it would halt the deployment (there are now as many as 300 Turkish boots on the ground at Bashiqa) Ankara would not comply with Baghdad’s demands regarding the withdrawal of the troops and tanks.

“The arrival of a heavily armed Turkish contingent at a camp near the frontline close to the city of Mosul has added yet another controversial deployment to a war against Islamic State that has drawn in most of the world's major powers,” Reuters notes. “Russia, already furious after Turkey shot down one of its jets flying a sortie over Syria last month, said it considered the presence of the Turkish forces in Iraq illegal.”

And Russia is correct. Iraq is a sovereign state and the Turks were most certainly not invited which means that by definition, what Ankara is doing is illegal. Hilariously, Turkey contends that Baghdad did invite them - it’s just that Iraq doesn’t remember doing it. "Training at this camp began with the knowledge of the Iraqi Defence Ministry and police," Turkish PM  Ahmet Davutoglu says. Iraq says no such agreement exists.

Still more absurd is Davutoglu’s contention that it is in fact Baghdad who's being “provocative.” "Those who make different interpretations of the Turkish military presence in Mosul are involved in deliberate provocation," he claims.

So breaking that down, Turkey deploys 300 troops and 21 tanks to a sovereign country without that country’s permission, then tries to claim that the “host” country agreed to the deployment even if they don’t recall doing so, and finally, when the country that was invaded cries foul, they are being “provocative.” It doesn’t get much more ridiculous than that....MORE