Some two days of fighting between Turkish forces and militants of the Kurdistan Workers’ Party (PKK) have left 17 people dead near the country’s southeastern borders.
In a statement issued on Wednesday, the Turkish military said two soldiers and 15 PKK militants have been killed in the fresh wave of clashes between the two sides that broke out in the Daglica district of Hakkari Province, near the Iraqi border, a day earlier.
The clashes broke out in a military operation launched by Turkish forces in the area after they bombed PKK positions there.
The Turkish military added that its warplanes pounded PKK bases in northern Iraq on Tuesday, the first such move since the recent snap poll.
The statement was released on the same day that Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan pledged that Ankara would press on with its anti-PKK fight until every last militant is “liquidated.”
The Turkish head of state made the remarks in his first speech after the ruling Justice and Development Party, known by its Turkish acronym AKP, managed to win back its parliamentary majority in last Sunday’s snap polls.
Hundreds of people have lost their lives since the Turkish army began a military campaign against PKK militants in northern Iraq and southeastern Turkey in July. The move ended a shaky ceasefire that had been declared in 2013.
Turkey’s pro-Kurdish Peoples’ Democratic Party (HDP) has recently called on the PKK to maintain their ceasefire, also urging the government to end military and police operations against the group, which has been fighting for an autonomous Kurdish region inside Turkey since the 1980s.
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