66 PKK militants ‘neutralized’ in one week: Turkish Interior Ministry

66 PKK militants ‘neutralized’ in one week: Turkish Interior Ministry

66 PKK militants ‘neutralized’ in one week: Turkish Interior Ministry A total of 66 militants from the outlawed Kurdistan Workers’ Party (PKK) have been “neutralized” in security operations in one week, the Turkish Interior Ministry announced on April 24. 

According to the ministry, 53 militants were killed, eight surrendered and five were captured alive in some 321 ground and air operations carried out between April 17 and 24. 

Authorities use the word “neutralized” to refer to militants who are killed, wounded or captured.        

Some 29 militants were killed in Bestler-Dereler district of the southeastern province of Şırnak, 11 were killed in the province’s Uludere district, six in the Amanoslar district in the southern province of Osmaniye, one in the Suruç district of the southeastern province of Şanlıurfa, one in the eastern province of Bitlis, three in the Çukurca and Yüksekova districts of the southeastern province of Hakkari and two in the Kulp district of the southeastern province of Diyarbakır. 

According to the ministry, eight militants surrendered in Şırnak’s Silopi district and five were captured elsewhere in Şırnak, the southern province of Muğla, the eastern province of Erzurum and the southern province of Hatay. 

The ministry said a total of 185 people were detained for allegedly providing aid to the PKK, adding that some 63 shelters belonging to the outlawed group were destroyed in nine provinces. 

Moreover, some 30 hand-made explosives were destroyed and two tons of material used in making explosives, 65 hand grenades, 77 weapons, of which 70 were heavy and long-barreled, were confiscated in the operations. 

In addition, 47 people were detained over alleged links to the Islamic State of Iraq and the Levant (ISIL), as part of struggle against foreign militants. 

As part of the struggle against Fethullahist Terrorist Organization/Parallel State Structure (FETÖ/PDY), some 1,015 people were detained. 

FETÖ/PDY is widely believed to have been behind the July 15, 2016, failed coup attempt that resulted in the deaths of 249 people. 

The ministry said that some 26 people were detained over their alleged links to the “leftist terrorist organizations.”

According to the ministry, some 613 operations were carried out in 72 provinces as a part of struggle against drugs and smuggling. 

Drugs worth 19,332,624 Turkish Liras and smuggles cigarettes and fuel worth 5,627,826 liras were seized in the operations, in which 918 people were detained. 

Furthermore, some 127 people were detained in 17 provinces in anti-drug operations targeting street sellers. 

The ministry also said 2,124 irregular migrants and 60 organizers were caught as part of the struggle against irregular migration. Of the irregular migrants, 401 were caught at sea.