Turkish army denies reports amid probe on civilian targets

Turkish army denies reports amid probe on civilian targets

Turkish army denies reports amid probe on civilian targets

DHA photo

Turkish military August 2 denied allegations that it hit civilians in the village of Zergele during air strikes amid Foreign Ministry launched an investigation into the claims

“The targets in northern Iraq and inside Turkey are being identified by qualified personnel, based on confirmed visual data and as a result of a very meticilous and detailed study,” said the military adding that the target was a shelter for outlawed Kurdistan Workers’ Party (PKK) militants. 

It added that an investigation regarding the village in question returned no findings of civilian residential areas within the impact range of the bombardment. Turkish Foreign Ministry on Aug. 1 said an investigation has been opened into claims that several civilians were killed in an air strike in northern Iraq.

Iraqi Kurdish officials said Aug. 1 six people had been killed in a pre-dawn strike by Turkish war planes on the village of Zarkel in northern Iraq.

Investigation has been initiated into claims

“News reports about civilian casualties - in addition to PKK losses - during the air operation on the Zergele Camp, which the PKK terrorist organization uses for logistic and coordination purposes, have been received with sorrow and an investigation has been initiated about the allegations put forward in these press reports,” the Turkish foreign ministry said in a statement, adding that “All the allegations that have been brought forward will be investigated fully.” 

The ministry said a joint study would be conducted with the Iraqi Kurdish Regional Administration. The ministry said all targets during the campaign early Aug. 1 have been chosen in areas where intelligence shows there are no civilians. But it also accused the PKK of using “civilians as human shields.” 

“The findings that will be attained as a result of these probes will be shared with the public as soon as possible,” the statement said.