Turkish army says at least 44 PKK terrorists killed, Barzani warns Ankara (UPDATED)
Hurriyet English with wire dispatches
Turkish General Staff said late Friday at least 44 PKK members were killed in the ground operation launched on Thursday night, as the U.S. repeated its support to Turkey's right to fight with PKK. The head of the regional Kurdish government in Iraq warned Turkey.
Iraqi Kurdish leader Massoud Barzani said Turkey will face large-scale resistance if it targets civilians in the operation. Barzanis office warned in a statement that the regional government would not stand by if the Turks struck civilians and it will not be a part of the conflict between the Turkish government and the PKK.
Turkish General Staff said in a statement on Friday that 24 terrorists were killed and several others were injured in clashes between terrorists and security teams. It also estimated that at least 20 other terrorists were neutralized by helicopters. Five Turkish soldiers died in these clashes.
The statement said a group of terrorists escaped to the southern part in the clash. The operation "merely targeted terrorist organization", it reiterated. "Cross-border operation that was launched by Turkish Armed Forces (TSK) against terrorist organization PKK in the north of
The Turkish parliament authorized the government in October to send troops to northern
"We have been in contact with the Turkish Government at several levels and we continue to express our absolute solidarity with
ONE SOLDIER KILLED IN MINE BLAST
Heavy fighting and artillery fire continued late into the night Friday as Turkish troops fought PKK members near their bases in the mountains of northern
Villagers in the area said they heard sustained exchanges of automatic fire in the Hakurk and Sidekan regions, on the Iraqi side of the border across from the Turkish town of
LESS THAN A THOUSAND
Government spokesman Ali al-Dabbagh said Turkish commanders had assured the Iraqi government that the "operation will be a limited one and it will not violate certain standards that they have set. They are targeting several PKK fighters and the Turkish troops are taking care of this," he added.
Turkish television said between 3,000 and 10,000 soldiers had entered Iraq, but several Iraqi officials and a military source with U.S.-led coalition forces in Baghdad said only a few hundred troops were involved.
The senior military source told Reuters two brigades made up of around 8,000 troops had taken part in the offensive. The General Staff did not specify the size or length of the surprise operation, given the poor weather conditions.
|23 Şubat 2008|