Iraqi Prime Minister Haider Al-Abadi and Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan promised on Wednesday to strengthen cooperation as ties between their two countries warm amid shared opposition to the Kurdish independence vote.
"We are part of a region suffering from conflict and instability, and it is time to cooperate to end these conflicts," Abadi said in a televised press conference after the two leaders met in Ankara.
Erdogan said they would explore ways to increase their cooperation "politically, militarily, economically and culturally."
During the meeting, both men were seen smiling -- a stark difference to when Erdogan told Abadi to "know your place" last October, after Baghdad criticised a Turkish troop presence in northern Iraq.
But since the non-binding Kurdish independence vote last month relations have improved, with Ankara -- which was particularly critical of Kirkuk being included in the vote -- backing Baghdad by threatening to close its border with Iraqi Kurdistan and apply economic sanctions.
"We have always said from the beginning that we support the territorial integrity of Iraq, and we will continue to say so," Erdogan said while repeating that the Kurdish vote was "unacceptable".
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