Iraq, Turkey butt heads, block flights over debt dispute

Iraq has banned all Turkish flights from landing in the country in response to a dispute over millions of dollars owed by an Iraqi government oil company to Turkey. Iraqi transportation ministry spokesman Karim al-Nuri said the decision to block Turkish planes from Iraq, including the semi-autonomous Kurdish region, was in response to a similar […]

Mohammed Tawfeeq and Ivan Watson report for CNN:

Iraq has banned all Turkish flights from landing in the country in response to a dispute over millions of dollars owed by an Iraqi government oil company to Turkey.

Iraqi transportation ministry spokesman Karim al-Nuri said the decision to block Turkish planes from Iraq, including the semi-autonomous Kurdish region, was in response to a similar ban in Turkey against Iraqi flights. However, a Turkish government official denied that Ankara blocked Iraqi planes.

The official did say that Turkey warned that if Iraq's State Oil Marketing Organization (SOMO) does not pay the $3 million owed to his country, then the country would ban Iraqi aircraft.