Continued raids

Turkish military aircraft have been targeted PKK positions in the mountainous northern Iraq since December.

The Turkish army also conducted a week-long ground offensive against PKK bases in the region, killing at least 240 PKK fighters.

Its said that dozens of PKK dugouts, training camps and ammunition stores were destroyed in that incursion into northern Iraq.

Ankara says that more than 2,000 PKK fighters are present in northern Iraq, which is under Kurdish control.

US support

The Turkish government says the PKK uses northern Iraq as a base to launch attacks on Turkish territory.

The US has given its support to Turkey, a Nato ally, by providing real-time intelligence on PKK movements in Iraq.

The PKK has led a campaign for self-rule in Turkey's mainly Kurdish southeast since 1984.

Ankara considers the group to be a terrorist organisation. More than 37,000 people have been killed in the 24-year conflict between Turkey and the PKK.