Turkey reopens consulate in Iraq’s Mosul

Turkey reopens consulate in Iraq’s Mosul

Turkey reopens consulate in Iraq’s Mosul

Turkey has reopened its consulate in Iraq’s northern province of Mosul, which was closed after the ISIL attack in 2014, Consul General Mehmet Küçüksakallı said on May 6.

“The separation is over, and we’re in Mosul,” Küçüksakallı announced on Twitter.

Uploading photos of the latest construction work in the building, Küçüksakallı declared that the consulate has returned to active duty.

Turkey had closed its Mosul and Basra consulates due to threats posed by the ISIL terror group. The terrorist group Daesh took over the Turkish consulate in Mosul on June 11, 2014, when it overran the city. The group held 49 consulate personnel and their families captive, including the then-consul general and current Republican People’s Party (CHP) deputy chair, Öztürk Yılmaz. The hostages safely returned to Turkey after 101 days in captivity.

“The province has seen many conflicts and faced numerous challenges,” Küçüksakallı told the state-run Anadolu Agency in his first interview after starting his duty officially on Dec. 1, 2020.

The consul general said ISIL was one of the biggest challenges but was eventually defeated, with “major contributions and sacrifices from Turkey, Iraq and the international coalition.”

Turkish Foreign Minister Mevlüt Çavuşoğlu also mentioned the importance of opening the consulate in Mosul in his speech at budget discussions at the parliament on Nov. 18, 2020.

“We are reoperating the consulates general in Mosul and Basra in line with our aim to reach all parts of Iraq. We are also working on the opening of the consulate generals in Najaf and Kirkuk for the first time,” the minister said.