Turkey Claims 30 PKK Killed in Northern Iraq Offensive

DM claims early success despite poor weather conditions

The weather is not favorable for a Turkish military offensive, Defense Minister Hulusi Akar conceded, but he is still claiming early success in the first few days of the offensive against northern Iraq, saying at least 30 PKK militants were killed so far.

Turkey announced the offensive late last week, the latest in a long line of anti-Kurd offensives in Iraqi territory. They’ve claimed Iraqi government permission for this offensive, but the Iraqi Foreign Ministry denies this.

Turkey has been fighting the PKK off and on for decades, and those who fled to Iraq have been a popular target in recent years. Ominously, Akar says the early casualties prove that no matter how much the PKK tries to hide they’ll be killed.

Early attacks have involved airstrikes and helicopters bringing in Turkish troops to the area. How many troops Turkey intends to commit is as yet unclear.

Author: Jason Ditz

Jason Ditz is Senior Editor for Antiwar.com. He has 20 years of experience in foreign policy research and his work has appeared in The American Conservative, Responsible Statecraft, Forbes, Toronto Star, Minneapolis Star-Tribune, Providence Journal, Washington Times, and the Detroit Free Press.