Protest This: Turkish Troops Attack Kurds

Nathan Newman nathan.newman at
Wed Apr 7 08:00:48 PDT 1999

If anti-NATO protesters want to attack the hypocrisy of NATO, raising this recent outrage as NATO member Turkey and its troops violate Iraqi sovereignty and enter a quasi-US protected region to slaughter Kurds seeking autonomy.

---Nathan Newman ------------------------------------------------------------------- April 7, 1999

Paper: Turkish Troops Enter N. Iraq Filed at 5:13 a.m. EDT

By The Associated Press

ANKARA, Turkey (AP) -- About 15,000 Turkish troops have crossed into neighboring Iraq to hunt down Kurdish rebels, a newspaper reported today.

It was the second reported cross-border offensive against Kurdish fighters based in northern Iraq since Turkish commandos captured Kurdish guerrilla leader Abdullah Ocalan on Feb. 15.

The soldiers, accompanied by 2,000 pro-government village guards, crossed into Iraq on Tuesday and have penetrated some 9 miles inside the country, the daily Cumhuriyet newspaper reported.

Also Tuesday, Turkish warplanes pounded rebel bases in the northeastern corner of Iraq, the newspaper said.

Military officials were not immediately available for comment.

Turkey has frequently launched incursions into northern Iraq in the spring after the snow clears. Turkish Kurdish guerrilla fighters have bases in northern Iraq.

Guerrillas of the Kurdistan Democratic Party, an Iraqi Kurdish group, were aiding the Turkish soldiers, the newspaper reported.

The KDP controls areas along the Iraqi-Turkish border and has sided with Turkey against the Turkish Kurdish rebels in past operations.

Rebels from Ocalan's Kurdistan Workers Party, or PKK, have been fighting for autonomy in the southeast of Turkey since 1984. Some 37,000 people have died in the fighting.

Ocalan is awaiting trial on charges of treason and could face the death penalty if convicted.

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