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President of Iraq's Kurdistan Meets Turkish Officials


Turkish Foreign Minister Ahmet Davutoglu has called for greater cooperation from Iraqi Kurds in fighting militants who cross Iraq's border with Turkey.

Davutoglu commented Thursday following a meeting in Ankara with Masoud Barzani, the president of Iraq's northern Kurdistan region.

The foreign minister said terrorist activities were the greatest threat to strengthening ties between the two regions.

Barzani pledged support from Iraq's minority Kurdish population, saying Kurds were saddened by both Kurdish and Turkish deaths. He said the violence must come to an end.

The meeting came after a Monday attack in which seven Turkish soldiers were killed. Turkish officials said Kurdish rebels killed the soldiers and wounded seven others in a rocket attack near a naval base in southern Turkey.

Barzani is on a two-day visit to Turkey for talks with top officials on economic and security issues. He also met Thursday with Prime Minister Recep Tayyip Erdogan.

The trip marks Barzani's first visit since becoming president.

Turkey has been battling the Kurdistan Workers' Party, the PKK, since 1984. The PKK has been fighting for Kurdish autonomy in southeastern Turkey, and has bases in northern Iraq. Ankara and much of the international community consider the PKK a terrorist group.

Some information for this report was provided by AP and AFP.

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