Airstrikes kill 70 PKK terrorists: Turkish military
40 terrorists in northern Iraq and 30 in northeastern Syria killed early Tuesday, says Turkish General Staff
By Burcu Calik
The Turkish military early Tuesday killed 40 terrorists in northern Iraq and 30 terrorists in northeastern Syria, the Turkish General Staff has announced.
A Turkish General Staff statement said that security forces carried out counter-terrorism airstrikes around 2.00 a.m. (2300GMT Monday).
PKK targets located on Mt. Sinjar in northern Iraq and Mt. Karacok in northeastern Syria were hit to prevent the terrorist group from sending terrorists, arms, ammunition, and explosives to Turkey, the statement said.
The air operation was conducted "within the scope of the international law" and "with the aim of destroying the hotbeds of terrorism which target the unity, integrity, and safety of our country and nation," it added.
Counter-terrorism operations will continue "resolutely" both inside and outside Turkey, it said.
The U.S. State Department on Tuesday said it was "deeply concerned" over the strikes.
"These air strikes were not approved by the coalition and led to the unfortunate loss of life of our partner forces in the fight against Daesh that includes members of the Kurdish Peshmerga," spokesman Mark Toner said.
"We have expressed those concerns with the government of Turkey directly," he added.
The PKK -- listed as a terrorist organization by Turkey, the U.S., and EU -- resumed its armed campaign against Turkey in July 2015 and since then has been responsible for the deaths of approximately 1,200 security personnel and civilians, including women and children.
*Safvan Allahverdi contributed from Washington.
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