Iraq-Turkey war of words descends to Twitter jibes

Iraq-Turkey war of words descends to Twitter jibes
Another war has emerged ahead of the Battle for Mosul - between Turkey and Iraq's leaders - and once again the US has been forced to intervene.
2 min read
12 Oct, 2016
Abadi has hit back at Erdogan in a social media snub [Getty/AFP]
The impending Battle for Mosul - viewed as a make-or-break offensive against the Islamic State group in Iraq - should surely be enough of a conflict to occupy the mind of Iraq's Prime Minister Haider al-Abadi.

But another war is brewing, and Abadi is not backing down.

The latest trade in insults with Turkey's President Recep Tayyip Erdogan over the presence of 2,000 Turkish soldiers in Iraq has hit Twitter.

Abadi has been busy trolling Erdogan with a tweet mocking the Turkish leader over his desperate video call to a television station during the 15 July attempted military coup to prove he was still alive.

"To @RT_Erdogan: we are not your enemy and we will liberate our land through the determination of our men and not by video calls," Abadi posted on Twitter.

The social media snub came after Erdogan told the Iraqi leader to "know your place".

"He is insulting me personally," Erdogan said on Tuesday. "You are not my interlocutor, you are not at my level.

"It's not important at all how you shout from Iraq. You should know that we will do what we want to do.

"Who's that? The Iraqi prime minister. First you know your place!"

We await Erdogan's comeback on Snapchat.

Meanwhile, Baghdad's growing anger has reached the White House, and Washington was quick to wade into another Middle East conflict.

State Department Spokesman John Kirby told AFP that "it was a matter for Baghdad which forces should be deployed on its sovereign territory".

"The Turkish forces that are deployed in Iraq are not there as part of the international coalition and the situation in Bashiqa is a matter for the governments of Iraq and Turkey to resolve," he said.