Turkey expands operations against PKK in south-east

The Turkish military is expanding its operations against the banned Kurdistan Workers' Party (PKK) in the mostly Kurdish south-east of the country, the Dogan news agency reported on Wednesday.

A new curfew has been imposed on Idil, a district in the already hard-hit Sirnak province, the governor's office announced. Reports said there were clashes between PKK militants and state security forces in the area.

Strict, round-the-clock curfews are also in effect in several other districts in Sirnak and Diyarbakir provinces. The curfews have drawn criticism from human rights groups.

Tens of thousands of people have been displaced by fighting in the past two months.

The army, which has been using tanks and heavy weapons, says 850 PKK fighters have been killed since December, though this number cannot be verified and the PKK has confirmed a much lower figure.

Meanwhile, the pro-Kurdish Peoples' Democratic Party says 277 people have been killed and these people are assumed to be mostly civilians.

The security forces have also reported casualties but an exact total cannot be confirmed.

The PKK and the state have been fighting since 1984, in battles which have left more than 40,000 people dead. Many Kurds in Turkey have long complained of systemic discrimination.

Last update: Wed, 17/02/2016 - 13:27
Author: 

More from World

US turns inward: President Trump vows to put "America first"

New President Donald Trump is vowing to unapologetically put American interests first, signalling a break in US...

Gambia ex-president ready to 'cede power,' mediation efforts ongoing

Gambia's longtime ruler Yahya Jammeh is apparently willing to cede power and step aside, security sources in the...

Mexican drug baron 'El Chapo' pleads 'not guilty' in US court

The world's most notorious drug kingpin, Joaquin "El Chapo" Guzman, pleaded not guilty in a New York court Friday to...

More than 200 people arrested in Washington on inauguration day

Police arrested 217 people on Friday in Washington during protests against the inauguration of Donald Trump as...

NATO a boon to US and Europe, Stoltenberg tells Trump

NATO is "as good for the United States as it is for Europe," said Jens Stoltenberg, the alliance's secretary general...