Muslim Times(Web Desk) -Turkish security forces have “neutralized” at least 30 members of the Kurdistan Workers’ Party (PKK) militant group, including three high-profile figures, during counter-terrorism operations across Turkey in the past one week.
The Turkish Interior Ministry, in a statement released on Monday, announced that Turkish troopers, supported by ground and air forces, carried out 1,419 counter-terrorism operations between May 28 and June 4.
The ministry said 14 terrorists were killed, five others were captured and another 11 surrendered themselves to authorities.
The Turkish military generally uses the term “neutralize” to signify that the militants were killed, captured or surrendered.
PKK rocket attack leaves three Turkish soldiers dead
Meanwhile, at least three Turkish soldiers were killed and another sustained injuries when PKK militants launched a rocket attack in Turkey’s southeastern province of Hakkari.
Security sources, speaking on condition of anonymity, said the Kurdish terrorists mounted the assault from a mountainous area on the Iraqi side of the border.
The Turkish military has started an operation in the area to “neutralize” the militants.
On April 15, the Turkish military stated that a high-profile PKK militants had been killed as Turkish military aircraft struck Hakurk-Kani Rash region, killing Birdal Burhanli, better known by the nom de guerre Agiri Mazlum Pirdogan.
The governor’s office of Turkey’s eastern province of Tunceli announced last December that senior PKK terrorist Murat Dag, better known by the nom de guerre Ferhat Yilmaz, had been killed along with seven other terrorists during an offensive in the Pulumur district of the province, situated some 800 kilometers (497 miles) east of the capital Ankara.
PKK militants regularly clash with Turkish forces in the Kurdish-dominated southeast of Turkey attached to northern Iraq.
Turkey, along with the European Union and the United States, has declared the PKK a terrorist group and has banned it. The militant group has been seeking an autonomous Kurdish region since 1984.
A shaky ceasefire between the PKK and the Turkish government collapsed in July 2015. Attacks on Turkish security forces have soared ever since.
Over the past few months, Turkish ground and air forces have been carrying out operations against PKK positions in the country as well as in northern Iraq and neighboring Syria.
More than 40,000 people have been killed during the three-decade conflict between Turkey and the autonomy-seeking militant group.