No: 310, 16 December 2015, Press Release Regarding the Attack against the Region of the Bashiqa/Zelikan Training Camp

Today, four Turkish Armed Force’s (TAF) personnel were injured in DAESH attacks against the Bashika/Zelikan camp area where there are training activities for volunteers that will form the core of the Mosul National Guard continue. The injured were evacuated to Turkey.

Turkish military authorities have issued a statement concerning this development. Our elements in the camp have immediately retaliated against the attack as necessary and destroyed some DAESH positions that were identified.

Two Iraqi volunteers that were being trained in the camp, including an officer, were martyrized and four others were wounded in the attack. We wish God's mercy upon our martyrized Iraqi brothers and convey our condolences to their relatives and the people of Iraq and wish a speedy recovery to the wounded.

This attack justifies our concerns about the security of the Bashiqa/Zelikan camp, which forms an important element of our support for the fight of Iraq against DAESH, and the necessity of the protection element we wanted to deploy there.

Unfortunately, the activity that has been continuing for quite some time in this camp with the sole aim of providing support for Iraq, has, a result of exaggerated news spread deliberately by some circles, been turned into a problem incompatible with the friendship and cooperation against DAESH between Iraq and Turkey. These campaigns have made the camp and the personnel visible target for the terrorist organization and this unfortunately instilled confidence in the terrorist organization.

Turkey has always stood by Iraq during its difficult times. It has been the one of the countries that has displayed utmost sensitivity concerning the sovereignty and territorial integrity of this country as well. With this understanding, we are greatly saddened by the fact that our efforts to support Iraq in its fight against our common enemy DAESH and defend our common interests of security are presented or interpreted as if they are part of a hidden activity to the contrary.

We see that recent developments have led to a deviation of energy and focus that should have been channelled to our fight together with the friendly and brotherly Iraq, against our common enemy, DAESH. Our wish is to see that priority is given to common fight against DAESH once again.