Turkish army bombs Duhok following soldier’s death

Following the death of a Turkish soldier in Duhok, the Turkish army heavily bombarded border areas in Kurdistan Region of Iraq, intensifying ongoing tensions with the PKK.

The Turkish army carried out heavy bombardments on bordering areas in Duhok province in Kurdistan Region of Iraq on Saturday, following the death of one of its soldiers there, local sources have reported, according to Rudaw.

A statement released by the Turkish defense ministry said one of its soldiers was gravely injured on Friday, due to an improvised explosive device detonation in Duhok province. The soldier succumbed to his injuries on Saturday. This explosion occurred in an area currently seeing an ongoing military operation by Turkey against the Kurdistan Workers Party (PKK).

Speaking to Rudaw, Kiyan Abdullah, who resides in the Kani Masi subdistrict of Amedi town, said that the Turkish military launched artillery on several villages in the region. The bombardment reportedly began at midnight and continued until 9:00 am the next day. Fortunately, there were no reported casualties from this assault. However, the extensive shelling has instilled a palpable sense of fear among the inhabitants of these border villages.

The recent escalation in violence seems to be part of a larger trend. Just two days prior to this incident, another Turkish soldier was killed in the province, reportedly by the PKK. This happened concurrently with the visit of Turkish Foreign Minister, Hakan Fidan, to Erbil. This marked his inaugural visit to Iraq and the region since taking office. On that same day, a separate bombardment by Turkey on a bordering area in Erbil province resulted in seven deaths. According to the Erbil-based counter-terrorism forces, the deceased were identified as PKK fighters.

During his visit, Minister Fidan expressed his gratitude to the Kurdish authorities for their cooperation in combatting the PKK. Moreover, he urged the Iraqi central government to officially designate the PKK as a terrorist organization.

The PKK has been an active militant group campaigning for greater rights and autonomy for the Kurdish population within Turkey. However, the Turkish government views them as a terrorist entity. Over the years, Ankara has initiated a series of military campaigns against the PKK and groups purportedly affiliated with them, not just within Turkey, but also in parts of the Kurdistan Region and Syria.

News Code 159197

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