Turkey Approves Action Against Kurd Rebels in Iraq

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Turkey's Parliament on Wednesday overwhelmingly approved the possibility of military action against Kurdish rebels in northern Iraq.

The government stressed that an attack against the rebels of the Kurdistan Workers' Party, or PKK, is not necessarily imminent and appeared willing to give the U.S.-backed Iraqi administration more time to crack down on the militants.

Turkish lawmakers burst into applause after a 507-19 vote in favor of allowing the government to order the military to cross into Iraq over a one-year period, Parliament Speaker Koksal Toptan said.

In Washington, President Bush said the United States has made it clear that Turkey should not send a massive number of troops into Iraq.

Bush said Turkey has had troops stationed in Iraq for sometime. "We don't think it's in their interest to send more troops in," the president said.

Iraqi Envoy Visits Istanbul

Bush also noted that Iraqi Vice President Tariq al-Hashimi was in Istanbul, Turkey, to meet with Turkish leaders and express concerns about terrorist activities.

"What I'm telling you is that there's a lot of dialogue going on and that's positive," President Bush said.

Hours before the vote, Iraq Prime Minister Nouri al-Maliki called his Turkish counterpart to say that his government was determined to halt the "terrorist activities" of the PKK on Iraqi territory.

Al-Maliki also emphasized the need for the two nations to continue to talk, his office said.

From NPR reports and The Associated Press

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