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Turkey: 119 PKK killed, anti-aircraft guns seized in 40-day Hakkari sweep

By Rudaw 7/11/2015
Turkish forces have been fighting the PKK since a two-and-a-half year cease-fire broke down in late July. AA photo.
Turkish forces have been fighting the PKK since a two-and-a-half year cease-fire broke down in late July. AA photo.

ANKARA, Turkey – Turkish forces killed 119 fighters of the Kurdistan Workers’ Party (PKK) and lost six men themselves during a 40-day land and air assault against the rebels in southeastern Hakkari province, the military said Saturday.

Since late July, when attacks shattered a peace process with the PKK that began in 2013, Turkish jets and artillery have been intermittently pounding the PKK in Turkey and northern Iraq.

The official Anadolu Agency (AA) reported local army sources as saying that the operation in Hakkari lasted from Sept. 27 to Nov. 5 and targeted PKK mountain hideouts, seizing or destroying anti-aircraft guns and other heavy weapons.

Military sources claimed that, since after start of talks two years ago, the PKK had “dug the mountains with drilling machines and placed Russian-made DShK anti-aircraft guns, creating several shelters and positions for them.”

It said the area was of “strategic importance.”

“The recent operation targeted the area from Buzul Mount and Ikiyaka Mountains to Doski Valley in Yuksekova district, where the PKK aimed to declare a ‘safe zone’ and stronghold for itself,” said AA.

During the operation, Turkish soldiers reached remote and difficult mountain hideouts “and destroyed the positions, shelters and caves” of the PKK, the agency quoted military sources as saying.

The operation, which included commando brigades, Special Forces and the air force, was conducted “sometimes in temperatures as low as -15 Celsius at night in steep, rocky areas,” AA said.

Several IED bombs planted on the roads as well as materials and chemicals used in their fabrication were seized during the air and land operations, according to AA.

“In addition, five Russian-made DShK anti-aircraft guns, 39 heavy weapons and 10,000 rounds of ammunition were seized,” it said.

Meanwhile, one Turkish soldier was killed Saturday in a mine attack in the Kurdish province of Sirnak which authorities blamed on the PKK.

The military said that the day before in Sirnak one PKK rebel was killed, while four others died in Diyarbakir, in ongoing military operations.

Troops also destroyed 18 handmade bunkers and an ammunition cache, an army statement said.

Turkish forces have been fighting the PKK since a two-and-a-half year cease-fire broke down in late July following a bombing in Suruc.


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Hoshyar Zaxoy | 7/11/2015
Is this Turkish army website?
Roj | 7/11/2015
Turkey has been playing numbers games for the last 30 years. if you add up all their number as PKK casualty figures, the PKK must have been eliminated long time ago. Four years ago nobody would have predicted Syria will be what it is today. Four years from now Turkey will be another Syria. All the signs point to that direction. The Sunni versus Alawi war of Syria will soon enter Turkey.
kallakk | 7/11/2015
Only 119? must be missing a couple of zeroes... lying sack of sh***
kurt basdar | 8/11/2015
Turks as the barbarians through history to been known for w/ their savageries, the funny part is, none of those supposed to be civilized but hypocrite nations would ask from Turkey, to let the Kurds speak, write, read & sing from their own language? if the Turks allowed their cultural rights this kurdish struggle wouldn't happened. This Kurdish struggle started against Turks, who are occupiers of the Kurdish land since 1923, because of that millions of people lost their live as well as Kurds lost their forest, orchard, livestock and homes and civilized world support these warmongers Salafi savages without shame or fear from god.
oh well.. | 8/11/2015
PKK thugs invade Kurdish towns and homes, dig trenches in front of people's houses, forcibly shut down Kurdish shops (using death threats). Better the war stays in the mountains than it coming into our homes.

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