Turkey: 42 terrorists 'neutralized' over last week
Security forces carried out nearly 1,400 counter-terrorism operations across Turkey over last week, says Interior Ministry
By Faruk Zorlu
A total of 42 terrorists were “neutralized” as part of counter-terror operations across Turkey over the past week, the Interior Ministry said on Monday.
Turkish authorities often use the word "neutralized" in their statements to imply that the terrorists in question either surrendered or were killed or captured.
In a statement, the ministry said security forces had carried out 1,383 counter-terrorism operations on April 16-23.
The ministry specified that 18 of the terrorists were killed, 10 were captured, and 14 surrendered to authorities.
During the operations, 131 people were also arrested for allegedly aiding and abetting the PKK terrorist group and 47 others for their suspected links to the Daesh terrorist group.
Also, another 532 people were arrested for suspected links to the Fetullah Terrorist Organization (FETO), and 12 others for links to leftist terrorist groups.
The PKK -- listed as a terrorist organization by Turkey, the U.S. and the EU -- resumed its armed campaign against Turkey in July 2015.
Since then, it has been responsible for the deaths of more than 1,200 Turkish security personnel and civilians, including a number of women and children.
FETO and its U.S.-based leader Fetullah Gulen orchestrated the July 2016 defeated coup, which martyred 250 people and injured nearly 2,200.
Ankara also accuses FETO of being behind a long-running campaign to overthrow the state through the infiltration of Turkish institutions, particularly the military, police, and judiciary.
34 terrorist shelters destroyed
Security forces also destroyed 34 shelters, including a number of caves, and two hand-made explosives in operations in the eastern provinces of Diyarbakir, Tunceli, Sirnak, Mardin, Hakkari, Van, and Bingol, the statement said.
In addition, they seized 5,033 tons of ammunition, 39 hand grenades, and 53 assorted weapons.
According to the statement, 2,553 anti-drug raids were conducted across the country, leading to 3,525 arrests.
A total of 9,062 people were also held across the country in the fight against irregular migration. The operations saw 88 suspects arrested for aiding illegal crossings, the statement added.