The Iraqi prime minister on Saturday urged Turkey not to stage a military incursion into the northern Kurdish territories, saying his government will not allow the relatively peaceful area to be turned into a battleground.
Prime Minister Nouri al-Maliki promised that the national and the Kurdish leadership were united in refusing to let Iraq be used as a base to harm neighboring countries and urged the sides to resolve their problems peacefully.
"If there are some problems, we should not rely on weapons and threats, or use violence and power because this will increase tension and deepen problems," al-Maliki said during a joint news conference with the leader of the autonomous Kurdish region in northern Iraq, Massoud Barzani, in the regional capital of Irbil.
"Secondly, the Iraqi territory should be respected, and we will not allow it to become a battleground," he added. "As we don't want to harm neighboring countries, so we don't want the others to enter the Iraqi territory with a military incursion or fight of any kind."