WASHINGTON, Jan. 29 (UPI) -- The policy of sharing intelligence with Turkey on Kurdish separatist activity in Iraq will continue under the new U.S. president, a top U.S. commander said.
Chairman of the U.S. Joint Chiefs of Staff Adm. Mike Mullen briefed foreign reporters in Washington on the U.S. military engagement in Iraq under the administration of U.S. President Barack Obama.
Mullen told reporters there is nothing to suggest the policy of sharing intelligence with Turkey on the activity of the outlawed Kurdistan Workers' Party, or PKK, will end, Turkey's daily newspaper Hurriyet reported Thursday.
"That focus on intelligence sharing, with respect to what we've done with Turkey over the better part of the last year, has been very important," he said. "And I see no indication that that won't continue."
In 2007 U.S. President George W. Bush agreed to give Turkish officials intelligence on PKK activity in northern Iraq. That practice came under scrutiny, however, when allegations surfaced that Ankara had shared that intelligence with Iran, which also engages in counterinsurgency operations against Kurdish rebels.
Mullen also told reporters the Obama administration was considering "a full range of options" pertaining to the duration of the U.S. military presence in Iraq, Turkish newspaper Today's Zaman noted.
Obama campaigned in 2008 on a pledge to pull combat forces from Iraq within 16 months.