ISTANBUL (AFP) – Turkish warplanes carried out a new wave of air strikes against Kurdistan Workers Party (PKK) militants in the southeast, killing 13 rebels overnight, the army said Monday.
“Thirteen terrorists have been neutralised,” in the remote Hakkari province, on the border with Iraq, the general staff said in a statement on its website.
Meanwhile in Istanbul, police detained at least 13 suspected PKK members on Monday after receiving intelligence that they were planning to attack shops and government buildings in the city with Molotov cocktails, Dogan news agency said.
Ankara has used air power and ground forces in a self-declared “anti-terror” operation to try to cripple the PKK in its strongholds in southeastern Turkey and northern Iraq since a two-year ceasefire broke down in July.
The group has hit back, killing more than 150 Turkish police and soldiers in a cycle of violence that shows no sign of ending.
The PKK has ended a unilateral truce it had declared before the November 1 election, which saw the ruling Justice and Development Party (AKP) win back a parliamentary majority in a major victory for President Recep Tayyip Erdogan.
Prime Minister Ahmet Davutoglu on Monday vowed to press on with the fight against the PKK until all its fighters are “wiped out from our cities.”