PKK will not allow Turkey to ‘invade’ Kurdistan Region: HPG leader

Commander-in-chief of the People's Defense Forces (HPG) Murat Karayilan (File)

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SULAIMANI — The Kurdistan Workers’ Party (PKK) will not allow Turkey to ‘invade’ the Kurdistan Region, a leader of the group has said. 

Commander-in-chief of the People's Defense Forces (HPG) Murat Karayilan said on Wednesday (June 3) that the authorities in the Kurdistan Region who don’t support the PKK should not create obstacles for the group.

He added the public should be united against the people who “are spying for the Turkish state” and called on them to support the PKK.

“Turkey deliberately targets civilians' vehicles so as to weaken the Kurds,” he said.

Turkey has launched military operations against the PKK fighters who are based in the Kurdistan Region’s border area with Turkey.

The Turkish military routinely carries out airstrikes and artillery bombardments in the Kurdistan Region against suspected PKK targets, but their frequency has increased since Ankara launched “Operation Claw” in May, as have civilian casualties.

At least six people total were killed and ten others wounded in three separate incidents within the borders of the Kurdistan Region last week.

The Iraqi foreign ministry released a statement on Saturday condemning deadly Turkish airstrikes in the Kurdistan Region’s border area with Turkey.

In contrast, the Kurdistan Regional Government’s (KRG) statement following the fatal airstrikes blamed the PKK, while expressing its concern about the civilian deaths.

KRG spokesman Safin Dizayee said in an interview published on Voice of America on Wednesday that the PKK actions are not “acceptable” and require the public to stand against the group

Spokesperson for the Turkish Foreign Ministry Hami Aksoy said the ministry had summoned Iraqi Chargé d'affaires in Ankara Issam Mohammed on Sunday after Iraq said Turkish strikes had killed civilians.

Aksoy said that the ministry told Iraq’s chargé d'affaires that Turkey’s cross-border operations “will continue with determination.”

(NRT Digital Media)