Turkish military kills 12 PKK militants in separate air strikes

Turkish military kills 12 PKK militants in separate air strikes

Turkish military kills 12 PKK militants in separate air strikes The Turkish Air Forces has carried out large counter-terrorism operations in the country’s southeastern provinces and in northern Iraq over the past two days, killing at least 12 militants of the outlawed Kurdistan Workers’ Party (PKK), state-run Anadolu Agency has reported.         

According to the Hakkari Governor’s Office, four PKK militants were killed in airstrikes on June 1 in the southeastern province.        

It stated that the militants were detected by an unmanned air vehicle in the region between Turkey’s border district of Yüksekova and the Mount Spi area of northern Iraq.        

Earlier on the same day, six PKK militants were killed in an air strike on the group’s positions in northern Iraq, the Turkish military said.        

Turkish warplanes hit the PKK in the Avaşîn-Basyan region as the militants were alleged to be preparing for an attack on Turkish border posts, the General Staff said in a statement.        

An anti-aircraft weapon emplacement was also destroyed in the strike, the statement added.        

Separately, on May 31, Turkish warplanes carried out air strikes on PKK targets in the southeastern province of Şırnak and Diyarbakır, killing two militants, according to initial findings, the military said in another statement. 

One bunker pit was also destroyed during the air strikes conducted in Şırnak’s İkikayalar and Diyarbakır’s Lice districts.

Major land operation in Diyarbakır continues
Meanwhile, the army continued its major land operation against the PKK, with the participation of up to 10,000 security personnel, in six districts of the southeastern province of Diyarbakır on June 1. The operation had been initiated on May 28 at 10 p.m. local time under the name “Martyr Gendarmerie Captain Fuat Oğuzcan Combined Arms Operation,” Anadolu Agency reported.

Two PKK militants have been killed in the operation in 104 rural neighborhoods of Diyarbakır, it reported, citing a statement from the Diyarbakır Governor’s Office. 

Security personnel also reportedly seized weapons and ammunition from a cave where the killed militants were believed to be hiding. A remotely controlled hand-made bomb mechanism made with 100 kg of ammonium nitrate and aluminum powder, as well as 13,800 root cannabis and a generator, were seized in the operation, while security forces detained one suspect.  

Additionally, in search operations conducted in six houses and annexes in five villages, an unlicensed shotgun, 50 kg of ammonium nitrate, 100 grams of plastic explosives, 25.8 kg of hashish, and 16.6 kg of powdered marijuana were seized. Security personnel reportedly detained six other suspects in connection to these raids. Of the total seven detained individuals, three were later arrested by court. 

Meanwhile, a non-commissioned officer was injured early on June 1 in the eastern province of Tunceli during an operation after a remotely controlled hand-bomb was detonated, Doğan News Agency has reported. 

The injured officer was transferred to the Tunceli State Hospital, where officials said his condition was stable. 

Following the explosion, the gendarmerie extended the ongoing operation in the region, to which two unmanned aerial vehicles and two cobra helicopters were sent, in order to locate the PKK militants.