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Türkiye says concerned over tensions causing loss of lives in Kirkuk, northern Iraq

Türkiye on Sunday voiced concern about the unrest in Iraq’s northern city of Kirkuk, where casualties were reported at protests.

"We are saddened and concerned over tensions that have resulted in loss of lives in Kirkuk, which is ancestral homeland of our Turkmen kin," Türkiye’s visiting Foreign Minister Hakan Fidan told a joint news conference with his Iranian counterpart Hossein Amir-Abdollahian in the capital Tehran.

Türkiye demands that Iraqi authorities end increasing presence of PKK terror group in Kirkuk, Fidan also said.

"The peace and stability of Kirkuk affect the overall peace and stability of Iraq. We see Kirkuk as a symbol of the culture of peaceful coexistence," he added.

Fidan said Kirkuk, a city with a long history, has recently endured great suffering and massacres.

"We believe that it is essential to preserve the delicate social balance in this city and ensure equal representation and participation for all groups in governance.

"We have long supported the formula for achieving equal representation and participation of all segments in the city," he added.

Fidan further said that safeguarding the rights and interests of Turkmen groups is among the key elements of Turkish policy towards Iraq.

"We will continue to oppose the politicization of Turkmen rights and support the Turkmen community in all areas."


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