19 PKK militants ‘neutralized’ in operations in four provinces
ANKARANineteen outlawed Kurdistan Workers’ Party (PKK) militants were “neutralized” in aerial and land operations carried out by the Turkish military in the provinces of Tunceli, Şırnak, Diyarbakır and Mardin, as the army prepared to “inflict a major blow” against the group this winter, Interior Minister Süleyman Soylu has said.
The Turkish Armed Forces announced on Nov. 29 that in clashes in the Hozat district of the eastern province of Tunceli, three PKK militants and their weapons were “neutralized,” while hand-made explosives were found in a shelter used by the militants.
Meanwhile, two militants were “neutralized” in aerial operations in the southeastern province of Şırnak, while their weapons and shelters were destroyed. In the same operation, five militants were killed by armed drones and three were killed in clashes.
One militant was also “neutralized” in an operation in the Silvan district of the southeastern province of Diyarbakır.
In Mardin’s Nusaybin district, five militants, including the alleged Mardin representative of the PKK, a most wanted individual, were similarly killed in aerial operations.
The wanted militant, identified as Hasan Turan, had a 300,000-Turkish Lira bounty on his head.
“Winter will not be easy for them. We will inflict a major loss, one that they have never seen before, with the help of all our security forces. Nobody can mention the name of the PKK in this country. Nobody who has been aiding and abetting the PKK will be shown mercy,” Soylu had said on Nov. 26.
In a separate incident, the governor’s office in the eastern province of Hakkari announced that in gendarmerie and police operations carried out between Nov. 25 and 26 in the Yüksekova district, seven million packets of smuggled cigarettes were seized. Governor Cüneyit Orhan Toprak said the cigarettes were worth 30 million liras and this was part of the PKK’s financial sources.