Baghdad, Oct 20 (IANS) Iraqi Defense Minister Najah al-Shammari has expressed his country’s concern about the Turkish offensive in northern Syria.
A statement by the Iraqi ministry on Saturday said that al-Shammari’s comment came during his meeting with the Turkish ambassador to Baghdad Fatih Yildiz and his accompanying delegation, Xinhua news agency reported.
During the meeting, the two sides “discussed a number of important military issues taking place in the region, and the Turkish offensive into Syria,” the statement said.
It said that al-Shammari has issued orders to the Iraqi security forces to “take all appropriate precautionary measures to block the routes that could be used by the terrorists to infiltrate into Iraq.”
Three days ago, al-Shammari said that the security forces captured a number of Islamic State (IS) militants who tried to infiltrate into Iraq to flee the battles in neighboring Syria.
He made the remarks during his tour on Wednesday to the Iraqi-Syrian border in western Iraq.
Al-Shammari’s comments came as Turkey carried out an operation against the Kurdish forces in northern Syria, which has seen widespread international and Arab condemnation and warnings that the war against terrorism could be undermined.
Iraq fears that IS extremists could flee into Iraq and pose a threat to its security during the Turkish assault in Syria.