First Published: 2012-11-07

 

Turkish commandos raid Kurd rebel bases in Iraq

 

Two battalions of special units backed by eight F16 fighter jets raid bases used by PKK rebels in Iraq.

 

Middle East Online

No casualties reported

ANKARA - Turkish commandos have staged a raid against Kurd rebel hideouts in Iraq, the NTV news channel reported Wednesday.

The rare cross-border strike hit targets some five kilometres (three miles) inside the border and came as part of an air-backed operation that has been going on for two days, according to NTV.

Two battalions of special units were flown into to carry out the raid on bases used by members of the Kurdistan Workers' Party (PKK). Eight Turkish F16 fighter jets supported the operation.

There were no immediate reports on casualties.

"The commandos returned home without losses after the small-scale but effective operation," NTV reported, citing unnamed military sources.

Turkey frequently stages air strikes against PKK bases located across the Iraqi border but land operations are rarely seen in the mountainous zone.

The operations are in line with a Turkish mandate that gives Ankara the authority to order raids to hit suspected bases inside northern Iraq, from where rebels are believed to be infiltrating.

Parliament voted in favour of allowing operations in 2007 and has renewed the mandate annually.

Recent months have seen a sharp escalation of Kurdish rebel attacks, prompting Turkey's military to launch an all-out offensive in the Kurdish-majority southeast.

As winter approaches, rebels pull back to shelters across the border, which

becomes particularly difficult to pass in the icy weather.

Last month, the Iraqi government moved to end the Turkish military presence in the north of the country, saying it rejected any foreign bases on its soil or action by foreign forces.

Since the 1990s Turkey has maintained several military bases in the autonomous Kurdistan region of north Iraq, where the PKK also has bases.

About 45,000 people have been killed since the PKK, which is blacklisted as a terrorist organisation by Ankara and much of the international community, took up arms for autonomy in Kurdish-majority southeastern Turkey in 1984.

 

Libya jihadists declare Benghazi ‘Islamic emirate’

Carnage in Gaza Strip as death toll passes 1,300

Morocco king deplores unequal wealth distribution

US plans largest ever sale of lethal missiles to Iraq

Qatar invests in Israeli soccer

Identification of Air Algerie crash victims ‘could take years’

Philippines prepares to evacuate 13,000 citizens from Libya

Jihadists fight on more than one front in Syria

Sudan Christian woman chooses US as final destination to settle down

France moves to disband violent Jewish group

Chief of Iran Quds Force ridicules calls to disarm Hamas

US supports Israel with weapons, Gaza with sweet words

Syria Kurds battle jihadists killing nearly 50

West watches post-Gathafi Libya descend in chaos

Mosul’s residents rise up against jihadists

Militants fire at Tunisia army helicopter

Islamists capture key Benghazi army base

16 killed in Israeli shelling of UN school in Gaza

Italian fire-fighting planes to come to Libya rescue

Syria rebels advance towards Hama military airport

Bloodshed in Gaza surges amid no truce

Major western powers call for Libya ceasefire

US-Israeli ties sink to new depths over Gaza war

UN warns buying oil from terrorists could lead to sanctions

Air Algerie crash black boxes sent to France

Warning of Tripoli catastrophe after huge oil depot blaze

US, UN call for immediate Gaza ceasefire

Egypt army kills 14 jihadists in restive Sinai Peninsula

Calls for temporary Gaza ceasefire fall on deaf ears

Yemen army foils new Qaeda attempt to seize military posts

Investigators need ‘few days’ to probe cause of Algeria plane crash

Tunisia army suffers more losses in open war with terrorism

Jihadists advance amid escalation in Syria anti-regime offensive

Iraq Shiite militia takes bloody revenge against ‘Islamic State’ in Baquba

Fierce clashes kill at least 38 people in Benghazi

Israel resumes devastating military assault on Gaza

Thousands face famine as food security situation worsens in Somalia

Death toll in Gaza climbs as fragile ceasefire reveals destruction

Egypt summons Turkey charge d'affaires for second time in one week

‘Islamic State’ jihadists dynamite Shiite shrine in Mosul

US evacuates embassy staff in Libya over ‘real risk’

Investigators begin 'difficult' probe into Air Algerie plane disaster

Armed men snatch Head of Baghdad Provincial Council

‘Islamic State’ beheads Syrian soldiers in Raqa

Kerry in Paris for talks on long-term Gaza truce