Turkish authorities have arrested more than 700 people suspected of links to the separatist Kurdistan Workers’ Party (PKK) after killing Turkish citizens in Iraq, and the US ambassador has been summoned to the Turkish Foreign Ministry in response to the US reaction.
The Turkish Foreign Ministry announced on Monday the arrest of 718 people suspected of links to the separatist Kurdistan Workers’ Party (PKK). Among those arrested are leaders of the People’s Democratic Party of Turkey (HDP), a left-wing party allied with the Party of Kurdish Democratic Regions (DBP).
The arrests were made after Ankara authorities announced that 13 Turkish nationals had been “executed” by PKK insurgents in Iraq. Turkish Defense Minister Hulusi Akar said Turkish troops had found the bodies in the Gara region of northern Iraq, an area where the Turkish military is conducting counterterrorism operations.
The separatist Kurdistan Workers’ Party (PKK) has acknowledged the deaths of 13 Turkish citizens it has held captive for years, but claims they were not executed but died in Turkish airstrikes.
The Washington State Department has expressed regret over the deaths of Turkish citizens in Iraq. “If the information on the responsibility of the PKK, a terrorist organization, is confirmed in the event of the death of Turkish civilians, we condemn these actions in the strongest terms,” the State Department said.
Sources in the Turkish Foreign Ministry have expressed dissatisfaction with the use of the phrase “if the information is confirmed”, arguing that Ankara’s version of events appears to be disputed.
“The statements of the United States are deplorable. You say you do not support the terrorists, but you are on their side, “Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan told France-Presse.
Amid dissensions, the US ambassador was summoned to the Foreign Ministry in Ankara on Monday. “The US ambassador, David Satterfield, has been summoned, and our reaction to the US statement was conveyed to him in the strongest terms,” the Turkish Foreign Ministry said.
Source: Cotidianul RO by www.cotidianul.ro.
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