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Last Updated: Saturday, 8 March 2008, 03:43 GMT
Iraq promises Turkey curb on PKK
A PKK fighter near Iraq's Turkish border (archive image from December 2007)
Turkey says it killed several hundred PKK fighters in February
Iraqi President Jalal Talabani has restated that his government will not tolerate Kurdish rebels in the north launching attacks against Turkey.

Speaking on a visit to Ankara, his first trip to Turkey as leader, he said he had told regional authorities to halt the activities of PKK fighters.

He is meeting his Turkish counterpart, Abdullah Gul, to discuss the recent Turkish cross-border offensive.

Mr Gul has said Turkey cannot allow PKK attacks to continue.

His words echo those of the Turkish military which has warned it will send its troops back across the border if necessary.

"We have requested that the Kurdish administration puts pressure on PKK units to give up their weapons or leave the region," Mr Talabani said, referring to Iraq's Kurdish autonomous region.

His visit is being seen as ground-breaking in Turkey, the BBC's Sarah Rainsford reports.

The previous Turkish president refused to invite President Talabani, who is Kurdish, because of Turkey's suspicions Iraqi Kurds were supporting the PKK

Mr Talabani's pledge is not new, our correspondent in Turkey adds.

It is, she says, more a re-stating of Iraq's official position and, so far, those words have little practical effect.



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