An emissary from Iraqi President, Saddam Hussein, delivered a message to Turkey's military head of State, General Kenan Evren, on Sunday (26 October).
SV Iraqi Minister of Industry & Mineral Resources, Tahir Tawfiq speaking in Arabic to journalists in Ankara, Turkey
SV PULL BACK TO GV Reporters taking notes
SV & GV Mr Tahir Tawfiq speaking in Arabic. (2 shots)
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Background: An emissary from Iraqi President, Saddam Hussein, delivered a message to Turkey's military head of State, General Kenan Evren, on Sunday (26 October). But he declined to disclose its contents to reporters.
SYNOPSIS: Tahir Tawfiq, Iraq's Minister of Industry and Mineral Resources, and a member of Iraq's Revolutionary Command Council, told a news conference he had delivered the message verbally, and was awaiting a reply. But he did make it clear he hadn't asked for Turkey's help in mediating in the Gulf War. He told the journalists that Iraq did not want to involve Turkey in the conflict. He wanted them to remain neutral.
Turkey borders on both Iraq and Iran. It has already said it will remain neutral, and allow no military equipment to pass to either side across its territory while the war continues. Mr Tawfiq said he had discussed the war with Turkish officials, as well as ways of expanding Turkish-Iraqi relations. One likely topic was the future of the Iraqi oil pipeline which passes through Turkey. It is now dry after becoming one of the first casualties of the Gulf War.