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Iran Press TV

Turkish president, Iraqi Kurdish leader discuss battling Daesh, PKK

Iran Press TV

Tue Aug 23, 2016 8:42PM

Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan and Iraqi Kurdistan Region's leader Masoud Barzani have discussed closing down schools in Iraqi Kurdistan affiliated with Fethullah Gulen, who Turkey blames for masterminding the failed coup, said Erdogan's office.

The Turkish presidential office noted that battling the Daesh Takfiri terrorist group and the Kurdistan Workers' Party (PKK) militants were also discussed during the Tuesday meeting with the visiting president of Iraq's Kurdistan Regional Government (KRG) in Ankara.

"Taking necessary steps to terminate the operations of schools and institutions affiliated with the Gulenist terror organization was among the topics discussed by Erdogan and Barzani," said Erdogan's office.

Barzani also expressed support for the Turkish government after quashing the July 15 coup when a faction of the Turkish military declared itself in charge of the country.

Ankara blames the US-based Gulen (seen below) for orchestrating the coup, an allegation Gulen has repeatedly dismissed and warned that the blame game could be a ploy by the ruling Justice and Development Party to cement its grip on power.

Meanwhile, Turkey's Justice Ministry has said its officials have opened talks with officials from the US departments of justice and state on a demand by Ankara for the extradition of the US-based cleric.

Last week, Erdogan accused the supporters of Gulen of helping the PKK militants in conducting new attacks in southeastern Turkey.

Ankara has been engaged in a large-scale anti-PKK campaign in its southern border region over the past few months. The Turkish military has also been pounding the group's positions in northern Iraq as well in breach of the Arab country's sovereignty.

Turkey's operations began in the wake of a deadly July 2015 bombing in Suruc, which the Turkish government blamed on the Daesh Takfiri terrorist group.

After the bombing, the PKK militants, who accuse Ankara of supporting Daesh, engaged in a series of reprisal attacks against Turkish police and security forces, prompting Turkey's military operations

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