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    Turkish army wants Iraq to contribute to fight against PKK terror

    Hurriyet DN Online with wires
    26.12.2008 - 13:24 | Son Güncelleme:

    The Turkish military said Friday it would welcome the Iraqi authority’s contribution to the fight against the terrorist organization PKK.

    "The Turkish Armed Forces' air strikes on terrorist targets in the northern part of Iraq since December 16, has created serious pressure on the terrorist organization. As a result of this pressure, the region is not a safe haven for terrorists any longer," Gen. Metin Gurak, chairman of the Communication Department of the General Staff, told at a weekly press briefing.

    "During the air strikes, the PKK suffered heavy losses. Also, increasing numbers of its members have fled from the organization. The Turkish military has taken all kinds of measures to prevent any civilian casualties in the strikes," he was quoted by the Anatolian Agency as saying.

    Turkey, provided with intelligence by the United States, has stepped up its campaign to crackdown on the PKK both inside Turkey and in northern Iraq, after the terror organization increased its attacks on Turkish soldiers, as well as civilians.

    "We also wish that Iraqi authorities contributed to the fight against the separatist terrorist organization," he said when asked about Iraqi President Jalal Talabani's remarks and Iraqi Prime Minister Nuri al-Maliki's visit to Turkey.

    Earlier this week, Maliki met earlier this week Turkish President Abdullah Gul and Prime Minister Tayyip Erdogan in Ankara to discuss possible measures against the PKK. His visit came as Iraqi President Jalal Talabani spoke of the possibility of the PKK laying down arms and disclosed a staged plan to end terror.

    Turkey and Iraq have established a Strategic Cooperation High Council to promote relations and to deal with the PKK. The council foresees at least one meeting a year with prime ministers, and three representatives at the ministerial level.



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