Turkish minister says only 700 PKK terrorists left in N. Iraq mountains

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Turkish Minister of Interior, Suleyman Soylu. AFP PHOTOS

Turkey’s Interior Minister Süleyman Soylu claimed on Friday that only 700 terrorists remained in the mountains of northern Iraq, referring to fighters of the outlawed Kurdistan Workers’ Party (PKK), the state-run Anadolu news agency reported.

He also announced that military operations targeting PKK terrorists would resume in the winter.

Turkey’s military carried out airstrikes in northern Iraq on Friday, killing eight militants from the PKK, according to Reuters.

The airstrikes targeted various regions in the area, including Zap, Hakurk and Haftanin, the military said. Turkey has regularly struck PKK bases in northern Iraq.

The PKK, which has been waging an insurgency in Turkey for more than four decades, is designated a terrorist organization by Turkey, the United States and the European Union.

The number of PKK fighters in the northern Iraq camps has been estimated at around 5,000 for years.

According to a pro-government Sabah daily report, there was over 30,000 active members of the PKK in 2015 when the Turkish government launched a full scale war against the terrorist organization.

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