Source AP ©

Iraqi interior minister arrives in Turkey

Turkish concerns over separatist Kurdish rebels holed up in bases in northern Iraq are to be discussed during Iraq's interior minister’s visit to Turkey.

Turkey is seeking an anti-terrorism cooperation agreement with Iraq that would engage its neighbor in cracking down on the rebels of the Kurdistan Workers Party, or PKK, which has been attacking targets in Turkey from bases in northern Iraq.

On Tuesday, a soldier was killed and four others were wounded when suspected Kurdish rebels detonated a bomb that was placed inside a van, at the entrance of a Turkish military outpost in the southeastern province of Tunceli, the private Dogan news agency reported.

"We cannot accept any person or group that is against Turkey," Iraqi Interior Minister Jawad al-Bolani told reporters on arrival at Ankara's airport. "We are here to take up every issue."

Turkey has threatened to stage a military incursion into northern Iraq to eradicate rebel bases there if U.S. or Iraqi forces do not take action against the PKK.

During a visit by Iraq's prime minister to Ankara in August, Turkey and Iraq agreed to try to root out the rebels. But the Iraqi prime minister said the Iraqi parliament would have the final say on efforts to halt the guerrillas' cross-border attacks into Turkey.

The guerrillas have been fighting for autonomy in southeast Turkey since 1984. The conflict has killed tens of thousands of people. The PKK is considered a terrorist group by the United States and the European Union.

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