Turkey: Deadly clashes between military and Kurdish PKK

Turkish military says it "neutralised" at least 100 PKK fighters, without specifying how many were killed or wounded.

    The figure is one of the highest casualty tolls in a single day of the conflict between Turkish forces and the Kurdish PKK [File: Reuters]
    The figure is one of the highest casualty tolls in a single day of the conflict between Turkish forces and the Kurdish PKK [File: Reuters]

    Turkey's security forces killed or wounded more than 100 Kurdish fighters from the Kurdistan Workers Party (PKK) on Saturday, according to the Turkish military.

    The figure is one of the highest casualty tolls in a single day of the conflict in recent years. Turkey's predominantly Kurdish southeast has been rocked by waves of violence since the 2015 collapse of ceasefire between the state and the PKK. 

    The military said in a statement that more than 100 PKK fighters had been "neutralised", without detailing how many were killed and how many were wounded. It said that most had been taken back to northern Iraq where the PKK has mountain camps.

    Turkey's southeast has seen heavy fighting in recent days in Hakkari province, near the border with Iraq, and in Van province, near the border with Iran.

    Five Turkish security force members were killed and six more were wounded in Hakkari on Saturday in heavy clashes with PKK fighters, Reuters reported. 

    Eight more security force members were reportedly killed overnight in Van. 

    More than 40,000 people have been killed since the PKK first took up arms in 1984 with the aim of carving out an independent state for Turkey's Kurdish minority, although it now focuses more on rights and demands for greater autonomy.

    Turkey, the European Union and the United States have labelled the PKK a "terrorist" group.

    SOURCE: Agencies


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