Turkey Launches New Airstrikes Against PKK in Northern Iraq

PKK Ambush Kills Turkish Soldier Near Border

Turkish warplanes have launched a new round of airstrikes against northern Iraq as well as some areas in southeastern Turkey, At least five PKK members were reported killed in the attacks inside Turkey, and an unknown number of others wounded in Iraq.

PKK forces also carried out ambushes against Turkish forces in southeastern Bingol, killing at least one soldier and wounding five others. The PKK forces were blocking roads in two eastern provinces, and ambushed the troops as they were headed there to confront them.

Turkish airstrikes against northern Iraq were extremely common during the US occupation of Iraq, but had halted during the two-year ceasefire with the PKK, which was to lead to peace talks. The peace talks weren’t making much progress, and Turkey unilaterally ended the ceasefire earlier this summer, attacking several PKK targets in northern Iraq.

Some PKK officials suggested that a return to ceasefire was possible initially, but were spurned by the government, which insisted that there could be no talk of ceasefire unless the PKK wholly disarmed and left the country first. The PKK is influential in the Kurdish southeast of Turkey, and the war has fueled military crackdowns against many Kurdish towns, adding to the tensions.

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Author: Jason Ditz

Jason Ditz is news editor of Antiwar.com.