22 PKK militants killed in southeastern Turkey
HAKKARİ - Doğan News Agency (DHA)
Twenty-two militants from the outlawed Kurdistan Workers' Party (PKK) have been killed in ongoing clashes in Turkey's southeast, daily Hürriyet reported on its website today.
The military has been conducting operations in the region since July 25, and clashes intensified after nearly 100 PKK militants, crossing from northern Iraq, reached the town of Şemdinli on the night of July 29 in the eastern province of Hakkari.
The attack on Şemdinli was repelled by security forces and a counterattack was launched against the PKK, centering on the Goman mountains three kilometers away from Şemdinli’s center. Cobra gunships kept possible escape routes under fire as soldiers and supplies were dropped off on the mountains with Sikorsky transport helicopters. Smoke rose from the areas targeted by the military.
Latest reports said the PKK militants were surrounded in a rural area between the villages of Rüzgarlı, Bağlar and Yiğitler in Şemdinli.
Members of the PKK, meanwhile, allegedly detonated explosives on a bridge connecting the villages of Yeşiltaş and Dağlıca, 50 kilometers from Hakkari's Yüksekova district yesterday night. The bridge was damaged beyond use and all land connection between Dağlıca and the rest of the province was severed. Repair teams from Yüksekova highway department have begun work on opening an alternate route.
The PKK is recognized as a terrorist organization by Turkey, the United States and the European Union.