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Turkey launches new military operation in Iraq

February 11, 2021 at 10:25 am

Minister of National Defence of Turkey, Hulusi Akar (Rear C) and the Turkish Armed Forces Command are managing and dispatching the Operation Claw-Tiger from the Army Command Control Center in Ankara, Turkey on 17 June 2020. [Arif Akdoğan – Anadolu Agency]

Turkey yesterday announced that it had launched a new military operation against what it said were the bases of the Kurdistan Workers’ Party (PKK) in northern Iraq.

In a statement, Ankara’s Defence Ministry said that the operation, dubbed “Claw-Tiger 2”, was launched in the Iraqi region of Qaradagh, adding that it aimed to neutralise the PPK group, which Turkey, the US and UK consider a terrorist organisation.

The ministry pointed out that the operation was launched based on Anakara’s “internationally-recognised right to self-defence, eliminating terrorist attacks against our people and security forces from northern Iraq and guaranteeing our border security.”

Despite objections by the Iraqi government, Turkey has been carrying out a number of counter-terrorism military operations against the PKK in northern Iraq, including ‘Operation Euphrates Shield’ in 2016, ‘Operation Olive Branch‘ in 2018, and ‘Operation Peace Spring’ 2019.

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