Turkish warplanes bomb PKK rebel
hideouts in Iraqi Kurdistan region
April 26, 2008
SULAIMANIYAH, Kurdistan region 'Iraq',--
Turkish warplanes bombed Kurdish rebel hideouts in
Kurdistan region in 'northern Iraq' on Friday in the
latest in a series of cross-border raids,www.ekurd.net
the spokesman for the
Turkey's rebel Kurdistan Workers' Party said.
The bombing targeted the district of Khwarkuk along
the border with Turkey, PKK spokesman Ahmed Danis
"The bombing started at around 8:00 pm (1700 GMT)
and is still on," he said.
Turkish warplanes have targeted Kurdistan Workers'
Party (PKK) positions in Kurdistan region in
'northern Iraq' since mid-December.
In February, thousands of Turkish troops, backed by tanks,
attack helicopters and warplanes,
crossed into Kurdistan region in northern
Iraq on February 21 in an operation which Ankara said was aimed at Turkey's Kurdistan
Workers Party (PKK) guerrillas and their bases, where Ankara estimates more than
2,000 militants take refuge.
Turkish warplanes bombed the bases of the Turkey's
separatist Kurdish PKK rebels in Iraqi Kurdistan
Turkish forces withdrew
from semi-autonomous Kurdistan region in 'northern
Iraq' on February 29, only a day after US President
George W. Bush
urged Ankara to
quickly wrap up the incursion and Defense Secretary
Robert Gates personally
put pressure on
Turkish leaders during a visit to Ankara.
The Turkish government has a one-year parliamentary
authorisation, which expires in October, for raids
across the border.
The United States has backed Turkish military action
against the rebels by providing real-time
intelligence on PKK movements.
Iraqi Kurdistan politician says, Turkey is using
Turkey's Kurdish separatist PKK rebel group as an
excuse to invade Kurdistan region 'Iraq' to prevent
the establishment of Kurdistan state in the Kurdish
autonomous region in 'northern Iraq', Turkey fears
this could fan separatism among its own large
Kurdish population in southeast Turkey.
Turkey rejects direct talks with the official Iraqi
Kurdistan government on the crisis over the Turkey's
separatist Kurdistan Workers' Party (PKK) rebels.
Officially, Turkey does not recognise the regional
government of Kurdistan led by president Massoud
Turkey has never, and still does not, recognize the
Kurdistan region government (KRG) and refuses to
meet with its representatives in any official
capacity. That reflects Ankara's fear that any
international respect shown to the autonomous Iraqi
Kurdistan region would only embolden Turkey's own
large Kurdish minority to seek similar home-rule
Over 39,000 Turkish soldiers and Kurdish PKK
guerrillas have been killed since 1984 when the PKK
took up arms for self-rule in the country's mainly
Kurdish southeast of Turkey. A large Turkey's
Kurdish community openly sympathise with the Kurdish
The PKK demanded Turkey's recognition of the Kurds'
identity in its constitution and of their language
as a native language along with Turkish in the
country's Kurdish areas, the party also demanded
an end to ethnic discrimination in Turkish laws and
constitution against Kurds, ranting them full
The PKK is considered a 'terrorist' organization by
Ankara, U.S., the PKK continues to be on the
blacklist list in EU despite court ruling which
overturned a decision
to place the Kurdish rebel
group PKK and its political wing on
the European Union's terror list.
Information for this report was provided by, AFP |
** Kurds are not recognized as an official minority
in Turkey and are denied rights granted to other
minority groups. Under EU pressure, Turkey recently
granted Kurds limited rights for broadcasts and
education in the Kurdish language, but critics say
the measures do not go far enough.
The use of the term "Kurdistan" is vigorously
rejected due to its alleged political implications
by the Republic of Turkey, which does not recognize
the existence of a "Turkish Kurdistan" Southeast
Others estimate over 40 million Kurds live in Big
Kurdistan (Iraq, Turkey, Syria, Iran, Armenia),
which covers an area as big as France, about half of
all Kurds which estimate to 20 million live in
Turkey is home to 25 million ethnic Kurds, a
large Turkey's Kurdish community openly sympathise
with the Kurdish PKK for a Kurdish homeland in the
country's mainly Kurdish southeast of Turkey.
Before August 2002, the Turkish government placed
severe restrictions on the use of Kurdish language,
prohibiting the language in education and broadcast
media. The Kurdish alphabet is still not recognized
in Turkey, and use of the Kurdish letters X, W, Q
which do not exist in the Turkish alphabet has led
to judicial persecution in 2000 and 2003
The Kurdish flag flown officially in Iraqi Kurdistan
but unofficially flown by Kurds in Armenia. The flag
is banned in Iran, Syria, and Turkey where flying it
is a criminal offence"
North Kurdistan (
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