Turkey

Turkish PM refutes HDP claims regarding Cizre operation

On Sunday, certain Turkish dailies reported on claims that 60 people had died during counter-terrorism operations

08.02.2016
Turkish PM refutes HDP claims regarding Cizre operation Prime Minister of Turkey Ahmet Davutoglu gestures during a joint press conference with German Chancellor Angela Merkel (not seen) following their meeting in Ankara, Turkey on February 8, 2016. (Halil Sağırkaya - Anadolu Agency)

ANKARA

Turkish Prime Minister Ahmet Davutoglu responded Monday to opposition claims regarding a military operation in southeastern Turkey against a building which reportedly housed injured people.

In a joint press conference in Ankara with German chancellor Angela Merkel, Davutoglu refuted Peoples’ Democratic Party (HDP) claims that security forces had conducted an operation in a building in Cizre, in which wounded were located, saying operations in the area were conducted with the utmost care to cause no civilian casualties.

“Regarding yesterday’s stories, anything that is not issued officially by us or confirmed should not be trusted. A picture is painted as if there were many injured in the building and many deaths occurred because of the operation that was conducted in there. Today, a statement was issued by our Sirnak governorate. Only that should be trusted. Neither the said situation nor the existence of the injured were confirmed.”

The Turkish premier also said ambulances sent to the zone were blocked by terrorists.

“Many of these injured are terrorists. Despite this, all efforts were made [for their care]. Yet, as you know, the ambulances’ access to the injured were blocked,” said Davutoglu. “Every struggle in Turkey was carried out transparently within the rules of democracy.”

On Sunday, certain Turkish dailies, including Radikal, reported on claims that 60 people in the building had died during the counter-terrorism operations.

Cumhuriyet newspaper said on Sunday that Faysal Sariyildiz, an HDP deputy, had said some terrorists had been burned in the building and that there were no signs of bullet entrance on the bodies.

The Sirnak governorate released a statement, saying that 10 PKK terrorists were killed during the operations.

The Cizre district of the southeastern Sirnak province has been the focus of counter-terror operations and military curfews since mid-December 2015.

The PKK - considered a terrorist organization by Turkey, the U.S. and the EU - resumed its 30-year armed campaign against the Turkish state in late July 2015.

Since then, more than 250 members of the security forces have been martyred and thousands of PKK terrorists killed in operations across Turkey and northern Iraq.

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