Report: Turkey launches airstrikes in northern Iraq

March 22, 2011, Tuesday/ 17:29:00/ TODAY'S ZAMAN

Turkey has reportedly launched air strikes against the outlawed Kurdistan Workers’ Party (PKK) in northern Iraq as clashes resurfaced between the terrorist group and Turkish military, Iran’s state-run Press TV said on Sunday.

Press TV cited a report by Iraq’s the Aswat al-Iraq news agency, which quoted eyewitnesses as saying Turkish warplanes pounded Nirwa Rikan, east of al-Imadiya town, on Saturday. It was not clear whether the attack resulted in any casualties. The air strikes come after the PKK declared last week to end a unilateral cease-fire, accusing the government of not responding to their demands for an end to the prosecution of elected Kurdish mayors and for improvement of prison conditions for the group’s imprisoned leader, Abdullah Öcalan. Clashes with the PKK generally increase in the spring, which brings warmer weather to the mountains on the Iraqi border where the terrorists are active. The PKK declared a unilateral truce in August last year and later extended it until the election, now set for June 12, to give the government space to resolve the conflict. The PKK said after it called off the truce last month that it would not attack Turkish targets, but would take a more “effective” defensive posture.

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