Turkey: Bush promises help to fight Kurdish rebels

December 24, 2007 17:41


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President George W. Bush promised Monday to continue helping Turkey fight separatist Kurdish rebels following the third air attack in a week inside Iraq by the US's NATO ally, a Turkish official said. Turkish Prime Minister Recep Tayyip Erdogan talked with Bush by telephone Monday after Turkey's latest attack on rebel bases in northern Iraq and the two men agreed to continue sharing intelligence about the rebels, said an official from the prime minister's office who declined to be named because he was not authorized to speak to journalists. Gordon Johndroe, a spokesman for the National Security Council at the White House, said the leaders discussed the "importance of the United States, Turkey and Iraq working together to confront" the rebels. Turkey's military claimed "hundreds" were killed in the first air attack on Dec. 16 and the subsequent incursion by ground forces. A pro-Kurdish news agency said the guerrilla group lost only five members.

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