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Turkey denies involvement in US air strikes in Iraq

IANS 10 Aug 2014, 7:52:09 AM IST
Ankara: Turkey on Saturday denied any involvement in the US air strikes on Islamic State of Iraq and Syria(ISIS) sites in northern Iraq.

"The US is using all its resources to bomb ISIS sites that it sees as a threat to its interests," Xinhua quoted Turkey's National Defence Minister Ismet Yilmaz as saying in a speech in the eastern Turkish province of Sivas on Saturday.

"Because of our responsibility of those 49(Turks) kidnapped people in Iraq, it is not possible for Turkey to do anything different to what we are currently doing," said the minister, denying Turkey providing any support to the US airstrikes in Iraq.

On Friday, the US military conducted air strikes against the ISIS targets near the city of Erbil, capital of Iraq's Kurdistan region.

The ISIS fighters took control of the Turkish consulate in the Iraqi city of Mosul in June, kidnapping 49 staff and their family members, including the consul-general, according to an earlier statement released by Turkey's foreign ministry.