Turkey steps up strikes against PKK bases

Turkey is intensifying its strikes against the bases of the PKK - the Kurdish armed nationalist party considered terrorist by Ankara - and its allies in Iraqi and Syrian Kurdistan. More than thirty targets have been bombed in recent days, the Turkish Defense Ministry announced.

Fighters affiliated with the SDF were killed on Friday 15 September in northern Syria, by a strike blamed on Turkey (illustration image). REUTERS/Rodi Said

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It is shelters, bunkers, warehouses and caves of the PKK that have been targeted, assures Turkey. Ankara says Kurdish nationalist fighters have been killed, but does not give a precise death toll.

Turkish bombs have been rumbling in the Iraqi Kurdish mountains for three consecutive nights, where the most important PKK bases are located, often tunnels dug in the Zagros mountains, says our correspondent in Erbil, Theo Renaudon

The sky of northeastern Syria is not calmer since this Friday, September 15, two fighters were victims of Turkish drones. The region is held by a military alliance close to the PKK, the Syrian Democratic Forces, allies of Washington in the fight against Daesh. "Two of our fellow fighters died as martyrs," the General Command of the Manbij Military Council said in a statement, "when their car was targeted by a Turkish occupation drone on the road leading to the village of al-Hattabat, south of Manbij." A third and one wounded fighter were taken to hospital, according to the command.

At least 58 dead since the beginning of the year

Since the beginning of the year, 58 people have died in Turkish drone strikes, including 13 civilians and 42 members of Kurdish forces and their allies, according to the UK-based Syrian Observatory for Human Rights (SOHR), which has an extensive network of sources in the war-torn country.

The SDF, backed by Washington, had been the spearhead of the fight against the jihadist group Islamic State (IS) driven from its strongholds in Syria in 2019. Turkey calls the main component of the SDF, the People's Protection Units (YPG), an extension of the Turkish Kurdish PKK rebels, "terrorist". Turkish President Recep Tayp Ergodan, who had just been re-elected, had made the fight against these Kurdish groups a campaign commitment.

(With AFP)

" READ ALSO Syria: violent fighting between the SDF and pro-Turkish rebels of the "Syrian National Army"


and with AFP)

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  • Turkey
  • Iraq
  • Kurds
  • Defense
  • Recep Tayyip Erdogan