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Iraqi Kurds fear Turkey’s military campaign aims beyond PKK

Iraqi Kurds worry that Turkey’s pursuit of PKK militants inside Iraqi Kurdistan could result in a permanent Turkish military presence and moves to undermine their autonomous region.
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The scope of Turkey’s ongoing military operations against Turkish Kurdish militants based in Iraqi Kurdistan is stoking fears in the Kurdistan Regional Government (KRG) that its own future might be at stake as part of broader Turkish designs in the region.

For years, the KRG has acquiesced to Turkish cross-border operations against the Kurdistan Workers Party (PKK), which has entrenched itself in Iraqi Kurdistan, using mountainous bases to sustain its armed campaign against Ankara. The Kurdistan Democratic Party (KDP), the dominant political force in Iraqi Kurdistan, has had an uneasy relationship with the PKK and sought to stay on good terms with Turkey, while the Patriotic Union of Kurdistan, the other major party in the region, has been more flexible toward the PKK.

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