Diplomatic Briefing

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Archive for January 19, 2012

Newsline: Rocket hits Turkish embassy wall in Iraq

At least one mortar round struck the outer compound wall of the Turkish embassy in Baghdad, but caused no casualties, an Iraqi official said, amid tensions between the two countries. A mortar round struck the perimeter of the mission in Waziriyah, in north Baghdad and outside the heavily fortified Green Zone that is home to the US and British embassies and parliament, an interior ministry official said. There were no casualties, and authorities claimed to have found the vehicle from which the mortar was fired. Turkey’s Anatolia news agency reported that at least two grenades were fired, with one striking the embassy’s outer wall and the other hitting a nearby road. It also said there were no casualties. Antatolia said Turkish Foreign Minister Ahmet Davutoglu, currently in Brussels, telephoned Ankara’s envoy Yunus Demirer to inquire about the incident. The attack came a day after Turkey summoned Iraq’s ambassador to protest claims it has been meddling in Baghdad’s affairs by voicing concern over a domestic political crisis. Feridun Sinirlioglu, the foreign ministry’s undersecretary, told the Iraqi envoy that the accusation was “unacceptable” and Turkey had a legitimate right to be concerned about events on the other side of its borders. Turkish Prime Minister Recep Tayyip Erdogan angered his counterpart Nuri al-Maliki by phoning him last week about a standoff with his Vice President Tareq al-Hashemi whom he has accused of running a death squad.