Turkey, Iran conduct joint operation against PKK

            By Muhammed Boztepe</p>  <p>ANKARA (AA) - Around 600 Turkish and Iranian forces recently carried out a joint operation against the PKK on Turkey’s eastern border, the country’s interior minister said Monday.</p>  <p> “We completed an operation in coordination [with Iran] that we had discussed for a long time in Igdir, Hakkari, Van and Agri provinces,” said Suleyman Soylu, adding the operation was conducted between March 18 and 23.</p>  <p>The two sides said they are determined to continue carrying out such joint counter-terrorism operations.</p>  <p>Last week, Turkey’s Deputy Prime Minister Muhterem Ince and his Iranian counterpart Hussein Zulfiqari said they were pleased to have reached an agreement on launching a simultaneous operation against terror groups that threaten the security of both countries, Turkey’s Interior Ministry said in a statement.</p>  <p> In its more than 30-year terror campaign against Turkey, the PKK -- listed as a terrorist organization by Turkey, the U.S. and the EU -- has been responsible for the deaths of nearly 40,000 people, including women and children.</p>  <p>*Writing by Erdogan Cagatay Zontur