Turkish air strikes kill 11 Kurdish militants in southeast

October 17, 2015 13:08


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DIYARBAKIR, Turkey - Turkish air strikes against Kurdistan Workers Party (PKK) bases in the southeastern province of Hakkari have killed 11 suspected militants and destroyed weapons depots and shelters, the military said on Saturday.

The air strikes on Friday targeted the Yuksekova area of Hakkari close to the borders with Iran and Iraq, it said in a statement.

The operations came despite a PKK call a week ago ordering its forces to halt all militant actions in Turkey unless attacked.

The government has dismissed the move as an election gambit to bolster the pro-Kurdish opposition ahead of Nov. 1 parliamentary polls and has said military operations will continue until PKK fighters disarm and leave Turkey.

The PKK, deemed a terrorist organisation by the United States and the EU, has been fighting an insurgency since 1984, demanding greater Kurdish autonomy in the southeast of the country. Some 40,000 people have been killed in the fighting.

The conflict has surged again since a two-year ceasefire collapsed in July, leaving peace negotiations in tatters.

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