Top communications body: Counterterrorism ops aim to send clear message to terrorists

DAILY SABAH WITH AA
ISTANBUL
Published 14.06.2019 00:01

Turkey will teach terrorists a lesson sooner or later, Presidential Communications Director Fahrettin Altun said late Wednesday.

"Although the heinous attacks of the PKK terrorist organization which martyred two Turkish road construction workers in Hakkari and two hero soldiers in Tunceli hurt us, the terrorists will learn their lessons sooner or later," Altun said on Twitter.

Altun said Turkey killed the perpetrators of the February 2016 Ankara bombings and had recently arrested one of the suspects of the December 2016 terrorist attack outside a football stadium in Istanbul.

The deadly Ankara blast occurred during the evening rush hour on Merasim Street, which connects Dikmen Street to Inonu Boulevard, close to the Turkish General Staff and Parliament buildings.

The attack, which killed 29 people, led to the arrest of 15 suspects.

The December 2016 twin attacks in Istanbul, one by a bomb-laden car and the other by a suicide bomber, targeted riot police near Vodafone Park stadium in Besiktaş district after a Turkish football league match, killing 46 people and leaving 243 others injured.

Altun added that so far, Turkish security forces had neutralized 45 terrorists in northern Iraq as part of its ongoing Operation Claw, which began on May 27 in the Hakurk region.

In its more than 30-year terror campaign against Turkey, the PKK, listed as a terrorist organization by Turkey, the U.S. and the EU, has been responsible for the deaths of nearly 40,000 people, including many women and children.

Meanwhile, Turkish security forces killed four PKK terrorists as part of domestic security operations, the country's Interior Ministry said yesterday.

"Two terrorists in the rural Ömeryan region in the town of Nusaybin in southeastern Mardin province and two terrorists in Adaklı in eastern Bingöl province were neutralized by the provincial gendarmerie command in an air operation," the ministry said in a statement.

Turkish authorities often use the word "neutralized" in their statements to imply that the terrorists in question either surrendered or were killed or captured.

The operation against the terrorists is ongoing in the area.

U.S. counterterror official visits Ankara

Ambassador Nathan Sales, the U.S. State Department's Coordinator for Counterterrorism, met yesterday with professor Gülnur Aybet, a senior adviser to President Recep Tayyip Erdoğan, during his visit to Ankara.

Releasing a statement, the Presidential Directorate of Communications said that the meeting underlined the strategic alliance between the two countries and cooperation against terrorist groups that threaten Turkey's national security.

In the meeting, both parties also exchanged views on bilateral relations and regional developments.

Meanwhile, thanks to Turkey's effective efforts, the establishment of a PKK state on Turkish-Syrian border is now out of the question, Presidential Spokesperson İbrahim Kalın said after yesterday's Cabinet meeting.

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