Turkey’s concerns about the state-building efforts in Iraq
The Iranian Journal of International Affairs
Institute for Political and International Studies
443 - 454
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There are historical, political, economic and military dimensions of Turkey’s longstanding interest in the developments taking place in Iraq. Close historical and cultural ties with the Turkomans, or Iraqi Turks, living mostly in northern Iraq; claims of Kurdish groups for independence; rich oil and gas reserves in the Mousul and Kirkuk districts; and instability due to insurgencies in the country are issues that make Iraq a case for serious concern for the Turkish security elite. This paper aims to highlight the reasons behind Turkey’s interest in state-building efforts in Iraq and to discuss two scenarios, one pessimistic and one optimistic that may be applicable to Iraq in the aftermath of the January 30th elections.