Türkİye, Middle East

Turkish forces ‘neutralize’ 18 PKK terrorists in northern Iraq, Syria

Terrorists targeted in areas of Türkiye’s cross-border anti-terror operations, according to Turkish National Defense Ministry

Faruk Zorlu and Merve Berker   | 07.06.2022
Turkish forces ‘neutralize’ 18 PKK terrorists in northern Iraq, Syria

ANKARA 

Turkish forces “neutralized” 18 PKK terrorists in northern regions of Iraq and Syria, the National Defense Ministry said on Tuesday.

Ten terrorists were targeted in northern Iraq in the Operation Claw-Lock zone, the ministry said on Twitter.

It also said the Turkish soldiers have seized numerous arms, ammunition, caves, and shelters that the terrorists used in northern Iraq as part of the cross-border anti-terror operation.

Türkiye launched Operation Claw-Lock in April to target PKK hideouts in Iraq’s northern Metina, Zap, and Avasin-Basyan regions.

It was preceded by Operations Claw-Tiger and Claw-Eagle, which were launched in 2020 to root out terrorists hiding in northern Iraq and plotting cross-border attacks in Türkiye.

Turkish authorities use the term “neutralize” to imply the terrorists in question surrendered or were killed or captured.

Separately, eight PKK terrorists were neutralized in northern Syria in areas of Operation Euphrates Shield, Olive Branch and Peace Spring.

“There is no escape from the end waiting for the terrorists themselves,” said the ministry, adding: “Our operations will continue unabated.”

The YPG/PKK terrorists often target Turkish security forces who provide security in the areas of Operation Euphrates Shield, Olive Branch and Peace Spring, and try to infiltrate the positions of Syrian opposition fighters from regions which the terror group was supposed to withdraw from under agreements with the US and Russia.

Since 2016, Ankara has launched a trio of successful anti-terror operations across its border in northern Syria to prevent the formation of a terror corridor and enable the peaceful settlement of residents: Euphrates Shield (2016), Olive Branch (2018), and Peace Spring (2019).

In its more than 35-year terror campaign against Türkiye, the PKK – listed as a terrorist organization by Türkiye, the US and European Union – has been responsible for the deaths of over 40,000 people, including women, children and infants.​​​​​​​

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