Aydın Selcen, who served as Turkey's consul general in the capital of Iraqi Kurdistan since 2010 until 2013, specifically mentioned Atheel al-Nujaifi, the former governor of the Nineveh province, and the leadership of Iraqi Kurdistan as those who asked Ankara for assistance.
"However, one could read between the lines that [by sending its troops to Iraq] Turkey is trying to prevent the Kurdistan Workers' Party (PKK) located close to Sinjar from strengthening its positions and establishing closer links between Sinjar and Qandil," he said.
President Recep Tayyip Erdogan and his supporters view the PKK as a militant organization trying to destabilize Turkey from within and by joining forces with other Kurdish groups in neighboring countries. Ankara has been locked in a decades-long standoff with the PKK at home. Last year authorities launched a major military operation in southeastern regions of Turkey, populated mostly by the Kurds.
On Tuesday, Erdogan asserted that Turkish troops will take part in the operation to liberate Mosul, the second largest city in Iraq, something Baghdad strongly opposes since Iraqi leadership has not authorized Turkey's deployment.
"We do not need to receive permission for this, we are not planning to get it," Erdogan claimed.
A day later, Turkish Deputy Prime Minister Numan Kurtulmus reiterated that "Turkey does not move on orders from others… Turkey's presence in the Bashiqa camp will remain until Mosul is rid of Daesh."