Turkey stepping up anti-PKK terror operations

Alaturka Amerika ABD Haberleri

By Gultekin Yetgin and Eyup Elevli</p> <p>BAYBURT, Turkey (AA) – Turkey has stepped up the number of its counter-terror operations against the PKK across the country in recent years, said Turkey’s interior minister on Saturday.</p> <p>&quot;Since the beginning of 2019, we have conducted 16,244 operations against the PKK terror group. This figure was 60,733 in 2017, and reached 104,534 in 2018,&quot; Suleyman Soylu told a meeting of civil society group representatives and local officials in Bayburt, northeastern Turkey.</p> <p>Telling how the PKK terror group has plagued Turkey for over four decades, Soylu said that Turkey used to retaliate after terrorist attacks.</p> <p>&quot;But we changed the strategy to combat terrorism, especially after July 15 [2016 defeated coup attempt]. Now, we conduct operations without a break, always chasing them [terrorists],&quot; he underlined.</p> <p>Soylu stressed that the PKK is in close contact with the DHKP-C, a far-leftist terror group, and the Fetullah Terrorist Group (FETO), the group behind the 2016 defeated coup, which martyred 251 people and injured nearly 2,200.</p> <p>Locally made weapons, equipment and unmanned aerial vehicles help Turkey in its operations against terrorists, he said.</p> <p>Explaining that Turkey's operations are not limited to Turkey, he added that Ankara would step in anywhere that could pose a threat, referring to areas of Syria along Turkey’s borders.</p> <p> </p> <p>- PKK and DHKP-C</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 some 40,000 people.</p> <p>The DHKP-C is responsible for a number of terror attacks in Turkey, including a 2013 attack on the U.S. Embassy in Ankara, which martyred a Turkish security guard.</p> <p>The group is listed as a terrorist organization by Turkey, the U.S., and the European Union.</p> <p> <p> </p> <p> </p> <p> </p> <p>