Turkey could strike PKK terrorists in Syria: Premier Erdogan
Turkish Prime Minister Recep Tayyip Erdogan warns that Ankara could strike the Kurdistan Workers Party (PKK) terrorists inside Syria.
“In the north, it (the Syrian government) has allotted five provinces to the Kurds, to the terrorist organization,” Erdogan told the Turkish television on Wednesday.
He also stated that the strike is “not even a matter of discussion, it is a given,” in response to a question whether Ankara would strike fleeing rebels after an attack on Turkish soil.
“That is the objective. That is what must be done.”
Erdogan made the remarks on the same day when a security meeting of senior Turkish officials, chaired by the prime minister, was held in Ankara.
“The activities of the separatist terrorist organization (PKK) in our country and in neighboring countries have been discussed,” read a statement issued after the meeting, which was held following reports that the Democratic Union of Kurdistan (PYD), the PKK’s offshoot in Syria, had taken over three villages in the north of the country.
Turkish Foreign Minister Ahmet Davutoglu, Chief of General Staff General Necdet Ozel, Deputy Prime Minister Besir Atalay and several other high-ranking officials also attended the meeting on Wednesday.
Meanwhile, the Turkish military said on Wednesday that its forces killed at least 15 PKK members in a clash near the border with Iraq.
Also on Wednesday, a Turkish official, who spoke on condition of anonymity, said Ankara would close Turkey’s border crossings with Syria until further notice.
The PKK launched an armed campaign against Turkey in 1984 in a quest to gain independence for Kurds living in the southeast of the country.