Turkish airstrikes destroy 19 PKK terrorist targets in northern Iraq
19 caves, caches, shelters thought to be housing terrorist ringleaders destroyed in airstrikes, says National Defense Ministry.
Turkish airstrikes against PKK terrorist targets in northern Iraq on Wednesday destroyed 19 caves, caches and shelters thought to be housing ringleaders, according to the country's National Defense Ministry.
Air operations were carried out in the Metina, Hakurk, Gara, Avasin and Qandil regions to “eliminate terrorist attacks against Türkiye and security forces from northern Iraq by neutralizing members of the PKK/KCK terror group and other terrorist elements and to ensure border security in line with the self-defense rights arising from Article 51 of the UN Charter,” the ministry said in a statement.
A large number of terrorists were "neutralized" in the operations, during which indigenously produced munitions were used to the greatest degree, the ministry said.
Turkish authorities use the term "neutralize" to imply the terrorists in question surrendered or were killed or captured.
“During this operation, every possible precaution was taken to safeguard innocent civilians, friendly elements, historical and cultural landmarks, and the environment from any harm,” it added.
Türkiye launched Operation Claw-Lock last year in April to target the terror group PKK's hideouts in the Metina, Zap, and Avasin-Basyan regions of northern Iraq, located near the Turkish border.
It was preceded by two operations — Claw-Tiger and Claw-Eagle — launched in 2020 to root out terrorists hiding in northern Iraq and plotting cross-border attacks in Türkiye.
In its more than 35-year terror campaign against Türkiye, the PKK — listed as a terrorist organization by Türkiye, the US, and EU — has been responsible for the deaths of more than 40,000 people, including women, children, and infants.