Turkey Launches Airstrikes Towards Kurdish Militants In Syria, Iraq

Turkey introduced early Sunday that it had carried out airstrikes on outlawed Kurdish militant bases in northern Syria and Iraq, which it mentioned had been getting used to launch “terrorist” assaults on its territory.

The offensive dubbed Operation Claw-Sword comes after a lethal explosion in central Istanbul on Sunday that killed six and injured 81, with Turkey blaming a banned Kurdish group.

“Any further we’ll begin Operation Claw-Sword,” Protection Minister Hulusi Akar instructed the Air Pressure operations heart earlier than the planes left their bases to strike targets in northern Iraq and Syria.

Akar was additionally seen in a video briefing by President Recep Tayyip Erdogan giving the order for the most recent operation, which based on a monitor killed 12 individuals.

The raids focused bases of the outlawed Kurdistan Staff Occasion (PKK) and Kurdish Individuals’s Safety Models (YPG), which Ankara considers an extension of the PKK, the protection ministry mentioned.

“In keeping with our self-defense rights below Article 51 of the United Nations Constitution, the Claw-Sword airborne operation has been carried out in areas of northern Iraq and Syria that are used as bases for terrorist assaults in opposition to the our nation,” he added.

Turkey blamed the PKK for the Istanbul bombing, the deadliest in 5 years and which evoked bitter reminiscences of a nationwide spate of bombings from 2015 to 2017 that had been blamed primarily on Kurdish militants and jihadists from the Islamic State group.

The PKK, which has waged a bloody insurgency in Turkey for many years and is designated a terrorist group by Turkey and its Western allies, and the YPG have each denied any involvement within the assault.

No particular person or group has claimed duty.

Turkish police have captured the primary suspect Alham Albashir – a Syrian girl who is claimed to have labored for Kurdish militants – in an Istanbul suburb.

“The hour of reckoning has come,” the Turkish protection ministry tweeted, together with a photograph of a aircraft taking off for an evening operation.

“The treacherous assaults of the scoundrels are taken into consideration,” he mentioned.

“Terrorist hotbeds razed to the bottom by precision strikes,” the ministry mentioned in one other publish, accompanied by a video exhibiting a goal chosen from the air adopted by an explosion.

Turkey has carried out greater than 20 assaults on websites within the Syrian provinces of Raqa, Aleppo and Hassakeh, mentioned the Syrian Observatory for Human Rights, a British-based monitoring group that has an in depth community of contacts throughout the nation. Syria.

The raids killed a minimum of six members of the Kurdish-led Syrian Democratic Forces (SDF) and 6 pro-regime troopers, the monitor mentioned.

A PKK spokesman mentioned the strikes had to date prompted no casualties.

The Turkish military usually strikes at backward PKK bases in Iraq – a thorn in Ankara’s relationship with the Baghdad authorities – and since April it has carried out Operation Claw-Lock in northern Iraq in pursuit of the militants.

Though Ankara didn’t present particulars on the operation, the US-backed SDF mentioned the town of Kobane in northeastern Syria was among the many targets hit by the Turkish raids.

“#Kobane, the town that defeated ISIS, is being bombed by Turkish occupation plane,” SDF spokesman Farhad Shami tweeted.

The SDF has supplied essential help to a US-led coalition in opposition to jihadists from the Islamic State (IS) group.

However Turkey regards the YPG as a terrorist group linked to the PKK.

Turkish Inside Minister Suleyman Soylu mentioned Ankara believes the order for the Istanbul assault got here from Kobane, managed by Syrian Kurdish militia forces.

“Turkish shelling of our protected areas threatens your complete area,” tweeted Mazloum Abdi, commander-in-chief of the US-allied SDF.

“This bombing isn’t for anybody’s profit. We’re making each effort to keep away from a serious disaster. If struggle breaks out, everybody will endure.”

Kobane, a Kurdish-majority metropolis close to the Turkish border, was captured by IS in late 2014 earlier than Syrian Kurdish forces ousted them early the next yr.

The US State Division mentioned on Friday it feared doable navy motion by Turkey, advising its residents to not journey to northern Syria and Iraq.

Turkey has launched waves of assaults in opposition to Syria since 2016 focusing on Kurdish militias and IS jihadists, and Ankara and its backed forces have seized territory alongside the Syrian border.

Since Might, Erdogan has threatened to launch a brand new operation in northern Syria.

© 2022 AFP