Turkish military announces destruction of 500 PKK targets in Iraq

Turkish armed forces announced Thursday that they destroyed 500 targets linked to the Kurdistan Workers’ Party in Iraq.

Turkish National Defense Minister Hulusi Akar said Thursday that Operation Claw-Tiger was going “very well” as Turkish Armed Forces destroyed 500 targets related to the Kurdistan Workers’ Party in northern Iraq. Photo courtesy Republic of Turkey Ministry of National Defense

The military said it launched strikes against the group, also known as PKK, in northern Iraq using F-16 jets, howitzers and multiple rockets as part of an effort it called Operation Claw-Tiger.

The Defense Ministry said mines and improvised explosive devices were also destroyed. The ministry shared images of rocket-launchers and howitzers targeting PKK shelters.

“Operation Claw-Tiger is going very well,” National Defense Minister Hulusi Akar said. “We will continue with the same seriousness and determination and hopefully we will successfully end this operation.”

The PKK is based in the Kurdish region of Turkey and is designated a terrorist organization by the Turkish government as well as other national bodies including the United States and the European Union.

Iraq’s government on Thursday called for Turkey to halt the operation.

“We stress that Turkey must stop its bombardment and withdraw its attacking forces from Iraqi territory,” the government said.

Saudi Arabia’s foreign ministry also admonished Turkey for the attack.

“We condemn and denounce the Turkish and Iranian assault on Iraqi lands, which is considered a rejected interference in the affairs of an Arab country, a flagrant violation of its land and a threat to Arab and regional security as well as a clear violation of international principles and agreements,” the ministry said.

ByDaniel Uria