BAGHDAD (Sputnik) — On Friday, media reports emerged saying that up to 150 Turkish military personnel had been deployed in the northern Iraq's Nineveh province allegedly to provide training to Kurdish Peshmerga fighters.
"According to my information, the number of Turkish forces in the province does not exceed 900. They are staying in a people's militia camp in the village of Dad in the Shekhan district," Akub said.
On Saturday, Baghdad described the move as "a serious violation of Iraqi sovereignty," since it had not been authorized by Iraqi authorities.
Iraqi Prime Minister Haider Abadi earlier urged Ankara to immediately pull out its forces, including tanks and artillery, from the Nineveh province. Iraqi President Fuad Masum referred to the incident as a violation of international law and urged Ankara to refrain from similar activities in the future.
On Sunday, Turkish Foreign Minister Mevlut Cavusoglu claimed Turkish troops had been deployed in Iraq on the country’s Defense Ministry invitation.
The Iraqi authorities threatened to turn to the UN Security Council, if Turkey fails to withdraw its troops from northern Iraq within 48 hours.