2 Turkish soldiers killed in terrorist attacks in N Syria, N Iraq

Published 03.12.2019 00:57
Updated 03.12.2019 00:59

Two Turkish soldiers were killed in terrorist attacks in northern Syria and northern Iraq, the country's National Defense Ministry said Thursday.

One soldier died at the hospital after being critically injured by a mortar attack in the Operation Peace Spring zone in northern Syria, the ministry said.

The other was killed during Operation Claw in northern Iraq, where another soldier was also injured.

The ministry noted that Turkish security forces retaliated following the attacks.

In northern Iraq, Turkey launched Operation Claw on May 27 against the PKK in the Hakurk region, followed by its second and third phases in July and late August.

On Oct. 9, Turkey launched Operation Peace Spring to eliminate People's Protection Units (YPG) terrorists from northern Syria east of the Euphrates River in order to secure Turkey's borders, aid in the safe return of Syrian refugees and ensure Syria's territorial integrity.

Under two separate deals with the U.S. and Russia, Turkey paused the operation to allow the withdrawal of the YPG, which is the PKK's branch in Syria, from the planned Syria safe zone. However, the terrorists have failed to withdraw from some areas and continue to attack both soldiers and civilians.

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

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