Ankara's already strained relations with Baghdad have taken yet another turn for the worse thanks to a recent deal signed between the Turkish government and the Kurdistan Regional Government in northern Iraq to export oil and gas from that region to Turkey. Reports the Associated Press:
The agreement envisions the Kurdish region exporting not only oil but natural gas through a web of pipelines through Turkish territory to the international market.
"Exporting oil from the Kurdistan region to Turkey is illegal and illegitimate," Iraqi government spokesman Ali al-Dabbagh said in a statement. "The oil and gas are the property of all Iraqis and those exports and revenues must be managed by the federal government which represents all Iraqis," al-Dabbagh added.
He accused Ankara of "participating in the smuggling of Iraqi oil ... and this issue will affect the relations between the two countries, especially the economic ones."
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