Erdogan signals cross-border operation in northern Iraq

Turkish President Erdogan has warned Iraq that if they do not act to prevent PKK authorities from attacking Turkey then they will do what is necessary.

Erdogan signals cross-border operation in northern Iraq

World Bulletin / News Desk

Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan has given notice to Iraqi state authorities that if they do not swiftly act to prevent the outlawed PKK from attacking Turkey the country will do whatever necessary against the armed group in northern Iraq.

Erdogan said, “Either Iraq will bring [PKK] terrorists to account for their actions or we will settle our accounts with the PKK. We told them that 'We bide our time. Either you deal with them or you will force us to deal with them.' ” 

“The day of reckoning has come,” he added.

Turkish media reported earlier reported that the Turkish army is planning undertake a large-scale cross-border operation into northern Iraq against PKK camps and militants following numerous attacks carried out by the group throughout Turkey in the past weeks.

Turkish media outlers have reported that Turkish security forces first plan to destroy PKK targets in Turkey. Then the military will launch a large-scale operation against the PKK camps in Hakurk, Avashin and Qandil which are the main bases of the group in northern Iraq.

According to the Turkey-Iraq Border Treaty signed in 1946 Turkey has the right of hot pursuit of armed attackers coming from Iraqi territory to a depth of 15 kilometres (10 miles). The Iraqi government also has the same rights with respect to Turkish territory.

Since the end of July, Turkey has seen a spike of attacks by ISIL and PKK militant groups since a suicide bombing, widely thought to have been carried out by ISIL, on July 20 in Suruc District of Turkey’s southeastern Sanliurfa Province claimed 34 lives.

The PKK has increased its attacks on both Turkish police and the Turkish Armed Forces and has killed several police officers following the Suruc suicide bombing. Thirty nine Turkish security officers have been killed in militant attacks by the PKK and ISIL since the bombing.

In response to the PKK and ISIL attacks, Turkish security forces have stepped up efforts against the militant groups and launched air strikes in several positions used by them in northern Iraq and Syria respectively since late July.

Güncelleme Tarihi: 15 Ağustos 2015, 18:03