Turkey vows to expand military op in Iraq till summer

Turkey is looking to expand its cross-border military operations against PKK in Iraq, Defense Minister Yasar Guler said.

Turkey and Iraq are in talks to jointly crack down on hideouts of the Kurdistan Workers’ Party, or the PKK, Defense Minister Yasar Guler said Monday, Bloomberg reported.
According to the American news agency's report, Turkey has employed a so-called inkblot military strategy to seize control of the rugged Iraqi border area, creating more than 100 army outposts in the region. That fits with President Recep Tayyip Erdogan’s goal to create a cross-border buffer zone with Iraq and Syria to combat the threat of the PKK from both countries.
“We are fully determined to create a 30-40 kilometer deep security corridor along our borders,” Guler was cited as saying by Turkish media on Monday. “This summer, we will complete the circle that will secure our Iraq border and eradicate the terrorism problem.”
“Because this is the distance where terrorists have settled and can threaten our country,” Guler said, explaining the rationale behind the proposed corridor. "If we keep terrorists at least 30-40 kilometers away from our borders, our nation and our borders will be safe."
After dozens of Turkish soldiers in Iraq were killed in attacks in December and January that Turkey blamed on the PKK, Erdogan vowed to step up military operations against both the PKK and its offshoot, the People’s Protection Units, or YPG, in Syria. 
“We will take new steps to fill the gaps in this corridor,” Erdogan said, referring to areas outside the control of Turkey’s military and allied Syrian groups within Syria.
Iraq considers Turkey's operations on its territory as a violation of its territorial integrity and has called on the international community and the United Nations to end Turkey's military presence on its soil.
Syrian legitimate government has also condemned the Turkish military's presence on its soil as occupation, demanding the United Nations and the community to help it retake its control over all its territories now under the control of Turkey and the United States-backed armed groups in the northeast, north and northwest of the country, as well as the south.

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