Antiwar News

19 Turkish Soldiers, 34 PKK Killed in SE Turkey Attacks

by Jason Ditz

The Kurdistan Workers Party (PKK) has issued a statement today claiming that multiple ambush attacks against the Turkish military has left 19 security forces dead, including 16 soldiers and three members of the national police forces.

These attacks were carried out over the course of the last two days, and sparked another round of Turkish military retaliation, mostly in the form of airstrikes, with the military issuing a statement saying that 34 PKK fighters were killed int the attacks.

The incidents took place in Sirnak and Diyarbakir Provinces, along the Turkish border with Iraq. Turkey’s southeast is predominantly Kurdish, and the PKK is active both there and in northern Iraq, which has also been the target of multiple airstrikes.

Kurdish MP Salma Armak reported that PKK leader Abdullah Ocalan, still in Turkish prison, has reiterated his support for a return to the two-year ceasefire that was in place before Turkey launched airstrikes against the group in late July. Turkey has suggested that they have no intention to return to the ceasefire without a unilateral disarmament of the entire PKK and the group relocating wholly to Iraq.