Turkish army neutralizes 76 terrorists over past week

By Baris Gundogan

ANKARA (AA) – The Turkish army “neutralized” 76 PKK terrorists including three senior members in northern Iraq and on Turkish soil over the past week, the military said on Friday.

Turkish authorities often use the word "neutralized" in their statements to imply that the terrorists in question either surrendered or were killed or captured.

In a statement, the Turkish General Staff said that between July 6-12, the army conducted anti-terror operations in the eastern Turkish provinces of Sirnak, Hakkari, Kars, Agri, Mardin, and Bitlis as well as regions of northern Iraq.

The PKK — listed as a terrorist organization by Turkey, the U.S. and the EU — resumed its armed campaign against Turkey in July 2015.

Since then, it has been responsible for the deaths of more than 1,200 Turkish security personnel and civilians, including many women and children.

Separately, the military said that since the launch of Turkey's Operation Olive Branch in Syria’s Afrin region, a total of 4,540 terrorists have been neutralized.

On Jan. 20 Turkey launched Operation Olive Branch to remove YPG/PKK and Daesh terrorists from Afrin. On March 18, Turkish troops and the Free Syrian Army liberated the Afrin district center.

According to the Turkish General Staff, the operation aims to establish security and stability along Turkey’s borders and the region as well as to protect Syrians from terrorist oppression and cruelty.