North Iraq's Kurds promise fighting back if Turkey invades to hit PKK

October 24, 2007 22:57


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Two Turkish jet fighters streaked across the mountain peaks near here Wednesday, on their way to bomb a site about six kilometers inside the Iraqi border, said residents of this Kurdish border village. The air assault, on an unknown target on the banks of the Zey-Gowra River, came after three days of shelling of the area by Turkish artillery, said Jalal Salman, the 45-year-old principal of the local school, and five other villagers. It also followed reports of other clashes on both sides of the border, including a claim by the Turkish military that it attacked a Kurdish Workers Party, or PKK, base here in the northern border region of Iraq, killing 34 separatist guerillas. The PKK denied the Monday report. Government officials here say there are no PKK bases in Iraq's Kurdistan region, at least in populated areas under government control, and say that most of the artillery strikes so far have hit orchards, roads, mountainsides and, in one case, a tourist restaurant in a cave. So far in this area, officials said, there were no casualties.

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