Three soldiers’ captivity by PKK counted toward military duty

Three soldiers’ captivity by PKK counted toward military duty

Three Turkish soldiers will not have to conduct more compulsory military duty after the seven months that they spent in captivity at the hands of the outlawed Kurdistan Workers’ Party (PKK) in 2012 was counted toward their period of mandatory national service, daily Milliyet reported yesterday.

The three were captured by PKK militants from a bus in the southeastern province of Diyarbakır on Aug. 6, 2012, and remained in captivity for seven months and 10 days in the mountains of northern Iraq, where major PKK bases are located.

Prosecutors who investigated the capture of the soldiers decided that the privates were kidnapped by the force of armed people. The Turkish General Staff subsequently decided that the duration of the soldiers’ captivity should be counted toward their period of service, and the three were discharged from the military after spending only three months at their military posts. The three privates took three months of sick leave after their release.

The three, Reşat Çeçan, Hadi Gizli and Ramazan Başaran, were released by the PKK on March 13, 2013.

After their release, they took 20 days of vacation and then returned to their military posts.