Erdogan gives Iraq a 'history lesson' on Mosul

Erdogan gives Iraq a 'history lesson' on Mosul
Turkey's President Recep Tayyip Erdogan is dusting off the history books in an attempt to convince Iraq that his troops have a role to play in the Mosul offensive.
2 min read
18 Oct, 2016
The Turkish president is still pleading to join the Battle for Mosul [AFP]
Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan has not let a day go by without complaining he wasn't invited to the Mosul liberation party.

Converging on Iraq's second city to chase out Islamic State group militants from the country once and for all are Iraqi forces. This includes the Iraqi army, Kurdish Peshmerga troops, fighters from local tribes, and a US-led coalition of more than 60 countries providing air cover.

So it is not surprising, then, that Erdogan is feeling left out.

After all, retaking the city where IS leader Abu Bakr al-Baghdadi announced his self-proclaimed caliphate would be a historic victory.

But despite Erdogan's pleas to be involved, Baghdad has repeatedly refused.

And as speech after speech has failed to convince Iraqi Prime Minister Haider al-Abadi Turkish troops had a role to play, Erdogan has unearthed another reason why Ankara should not stay on the sidelines.

Speaking at the International Law Congress in Istanbul on Monday, he invoked an early 20th century document which claimed Mosul was on Turkish soil.

In Mosul "a history lies for us. If the gentlemen desire so, let them read the Misak-i Milli (National Oath) and understand what the place means to us," Erdogan declared.

The Turkish president referred to an Ottoman parliament-sealed 1920 pact that designates Kirkuk and Mosul as parts of Turkey.

It was in 1926 that Iraq, Turkey, and the-then colonial power of Great Britain agreed in the Ankara Pact that Iraq should keep Mosul on recommendation of the League of Nations Council.

But Erdogan's history lesson is likely to fall on deaf ears once more, especially now the party's started without him.