By Diyar Guldogan
Ankara will not take instructions from Iraq on Turkey's military camp in Bashiqa, President Recep Tayyip Erdogan said on Tuesday.
In an address to the 9th Eurasian Islamic Council in Istanbul, Erdogan told Iraqi Prime Minister Haidar al-Abadi to "know his limits," reminding him the Turkish military presence in Iraq was due to a demand made by Baghdad itself.
"He [Abadi] insults me ... It is not important for us you scream in Iraq. We will go our own way," Erdogan said.
The Turkish leader said Abadi himself had asked for the formation of a military base in Bashiqa, located some 12 kilometers (7.5 miles) northeast of the Daesh-held city of Mosul. The Iraqi government requests came during the term of former Turkish Prime Minister Ahmet Davutoglu.
Erdogan said Turkey had “live records” of Iraqi government's security demands and said these would be broadcast “today or tomorrow”.
"Now, he [Abadi] says: 'Withdraw from here'. The army of the Republic of Turkey has not lost its standing so as to take instructions from you," Erdogan added. The president also said Turkey would continue to do "what is necessary".
He added Turkey could not be "a mere spectator" over developments in Iraq: "If Iraq and Syria are in trouble, it is Turkey's utmost responsibility to put all kinds of efforts into solving the problem and take measures."
He added: "Before anything else, this is a need of brotherhood and neighborliness. For this, we are not in need of permission from anywhere.”
Erdogan also said Turkey did not "have an eye on anybody's territory or sovereignty” and said the country had no aim apart from “ensuring the security of our territories and wanting the wellbeing of Muslims in the region”.
Regarding the Fetullah Terrorist Organization (FETO), Erdogan said the group was a threat "as important as Daesh" for Muslims and the entire world.
"This threat [FETO] is not only common to Turkey," he said. He added Eurasia was FETO’s first expansion area, a place where it was "deeply active".
Erdogan also said Daesh, which "murders people who do not obey it", was same as FETO which had "opened fire on its people on July 15".
Turkey accuses FETO, led by U.S.-based Fetullah Gulen, of organizing the defeated coup as well as a long-running campaign to overthrow the state through the infiltration of Turkish institutions, particularly the military, police and judiciary.