Turkish troops wounded after IS shells hit Iraq base

Turkish troops wounded after IS shells hit Iraq base
Turkish troops stationed at a controversial base in northern Iraq have been attacked by IS militants who fired off a barrage of rockets and mortars injuring four soldiers.
2 min read
16 December, 2015
Turkish troops deployed in northern Iraq have led to divisions between Baghdad and Erbil [Getty]

Four Turkish soldiers were wounded on Wednesday when Islamic State group militants fired mortars on a training camp near the Iraqi city of Mosul, a Turkish official said.

The Turkish military responded to the attack on the camp -used to train Iraqi-Kurdish anti-IS fighters - with fire of their own, according to media reports.

"Four Turkish troops were wounded in a mortar attack against the military training camp near Mosul," the Turkish official told AFP, emphasising that the attack originated from IS-held territory.

"All four servicemen have since been evacuated and are currently undergoing medical treatment. We are pleased to confirm that their condition is stable," added an anonymous.

According to CNN-Turk, IS militants fired up to 60 mortar rounds over several hours. The Turkish forces stationed in the camp responded with artillery fire.

One of the Turkish troops was seriously wounded but his life is not in danger, it added. The official Anadolu news agency said all four had been taken for treatment in the Sirnak province on the Turkish side of the border.

Turkey earlier this month announced that hundreds of troops had been deployed at the Bashiqa camp to protect Turkish military who were training local Iraqi fighters seeking to recapture Mosul from the IS.

But the deployment outraged the central Iraqi government in Baghdad, which bitterly complained to Ankara and said it would take the issue to the UN Security Council.

In a bid to placate Baghdad, an unspecified contingent of the Turkish troops this week pulled out of the camp and headed northwards.

The Iraqi government on Tuesday demanded the "complete withdrawal" of Turkish forces from its territory, indicating Ankara's partial pullout the previous day was not enough.

By contrast, the deployment has been supported by the Kurdistan Regional Government, which controls the northern Iraqi region and has good relations with Ankara.

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