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Turkey defends actions over consulate seizure in Iraq, 80 still held

ANKARA - Diplomats and soldiers trapped inside Turkey's consulate in the northern Iraqi city of Mosul had no option but to surrender this week after hundreds of heavily armed Islamist militants surrounded the building, the foreign ministry said on Saturday.

 

The seizure by insurgents from the Islamic State in Iraq and the Levant (ISIL) on Wednesday of 49 Turks, including Special Forces soldiers, diplomats and children, has prompted criticism of Prime Minister Tayyip Erdogan's government for failing to foresee the danger and evacuate the consulate sooner. (Reuters)