Turkey summons US envoy to protest in ‘strongest terms’

Turkey summons US envoy to protest in ‘strongest terms’

ANKARA- Anadolu Agency
Turkey summons US envoy to protest in ‘strongest terms’

Turkey told Washington’s envoy it took the “strongest” exception to a U.S. statement on the massacre of 13 Turkish citizens over the weekend, said the Turkish Foreign Ministry.

“Today, U.S. Ambassador David Satterfield was summoned to our ministry, and our reaction to the statement by the US was voiced in the strongest terms,” said a ministry statement on Feb. 15. 

On Sunday the U.S. State Department issued a conditional condemnation over the execution of 13 citizens by the PKK terror group in northern Iraq, saying in part: "If reports of the death of Turkish civilians at the hands of the PKK, a designated terrorist organization, are confirmed, we condemn this action in the strongest possible terms." 

But Turkey's National Turkish Defense Ministry later said that at a Monday meeting at ministry headquarters in the capital Ankara, Satterfield confirmed that the U.S. holds the terrorist group PKK responsible for the massacre.

At the meeting, Satterfield offered his condolences over the soldiers martyred in Turkey’s anti-terror operation in Gara and the 13 citizens martyred by PKK terrorists, confirming that Washington holds the terrorist PKK responsible for the massacre, said the ministry.

The massacre took place amid Turkey’s Operation Claw-Eagle 2, launched on Feb. 10 to prevent the PKK and other terror groups from re-establishing positions used to carry out cross-border terror attacks on Turkey.

Operations Claw-Tiger and Claw-Eagle began last June to ensure the safety of people and Turkey's borders.

In its more than 30-year terror campaign against Turkey, the PKK – listed as a terrorist organization by Turkey, the U.S., and EU – has been responsible for the deaths of 40,000 people, including women and children.