Southeastern town becomes battlefield after 13-day curfew

Southeastern town becomes battlefield after 13-day curfew

Southeastern town becomes battlefield after 13-day curfew

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The southeastern town of Nusaybin has become a post-war battlefield after a 13-day curfew imposed for military operations against outlawed Kurdistan Workers’ Party (PKK) militants, while a new curfew was imposed on the southeastern town of Derik, Doğan News Agency has reported.

The latest curfew on Nusaybin, a district in the southeastern province of Mardin, was imposed at 9 p.m. on Nov. 13 to prevent civilian casualties during anti-terror operations launched both to remove barricades and fill in trenches dug by militants and clear the town off members of the outlawed organization. The curfew was lifted at 8 a.m. on Nov. 26.

Having seen days-long clashes between Turkish security forces and PKK militants, Nusaybin surfaced with fallen retaining walls, ruined homes, smashed store front windows, metal doors with bullet holes and severe damage to infrastructure, including electrical transmission towers and paving stones.

Nusaybin residents, who had been stuck inside their homes for more than ten days, rushed outside to meet their needs after the lifting of the curfew, with tension still high in the town.

Nusaybin’s neighborhoods of Abdulkadirpaşa, Farat, Yenişehir and Dicle, all of which have seen intense clashes with PKK militants, were reported to still be closed to vehicular traffic. 

Pools of water which formed when the town’s water supply lines burst because of explosions and gunfire during the days-long clashes were reported from the curfew-hit town, as well as trenches full of water.

Turkey has recently stepped up efforts in fighting against PKK militants, in its east and southeast in particular, with aerial and ground operations as well as curfews imposed for locally conducted counterterrorism activities.

The Turkish army conducted airstrikes targeting PKK targets in the Çukurca district of the southeastern province of Hakkari on Nov. 26, the Turkish General Staff said in a written statement.

Shelters, ammunition warehouses and camps, all identified as used by PKK militants, were destroyed in the airstrikes, the General Staff added.

The General Staff also said in the statement that a group of PKK militants had set ablaze a long vehicle on a road connecting the İdil district of the southeastern province of Şırnak and Mardin’s Midyat district.

In Mardin’s Derik district, meanwhile, a curfew was declared for eight neighborhoods at 12 a.m. on Nov. 25 and lifted at 5 p.m. on Nov. 26, the Mardin Governor’s Office said in a written statement.

The curfew was imposed to prevent civilian casualties during military operations against PKK militants in the district, the statement added.