White House endorses Turkey operation on PKK in Iraq

The White House Friday endorsed Turkey's airstrikes against PKK targets in northern Iraq, saying they targeted terrorists of the outlawed Kurdistan Workers' Party (PKK) group.

White House endorses Turkey operation on PKK in Iraq
"These are ongoing operations against the PKK, a terrorist organization. The United States, Iraq and Turkey are all committed to dealing with this problem," said U.S. National Security Council spokesman Gordon Johndroe.

Earlier, Turkey's military said in a statement that its warplanes struck overnight at PKK hideouts in northern Iraq, along the border with Iran, in " comprehensive and efficient" raids.

Turkey's NTV television news reported that 50 fighter jets participated in the raid, while the pro-PKK Firat news agency said the bombing lasted three hours.

Speaking in northern Iraq, PKK spokesman Ahmed Danis claimed the militants had suffered no losses in the strikes and said that the Turks and the Iranians were increasing their cooperation to try and snuff the militants out.

Turkish warplanes have been bombing PKK positions in northern Iraq since mid- December. In February, the army conducted a week-long ground offensive against PKK hideouts in the region, where Ankara estimates more than 2,000 militants take refuge.

Turkey's parliament authorized cross-border military action against the militants for a period of one year in October, paving the way for the ground offensive, which was preceded by five bombing raids on PKK targets in northern Iraq.

Agencies
Last Mod: 04 Mayıs 2008, 09:27
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