2 YPG/PKK terrorists surrender to Turkish forces

Published 05.01.2020 20:22

Two YPG/PKK terrorists have surrendered to Turkish security forces in southeastern Turkey, according to the country's National Defense Ministry.

In a statement, the ministry said on Sunday that the terrorists fled the terror group's hidden shelters in Syria, before crossing a border post into the Suruc district in Şanlıurfa. It added that similar escapes from the terrorist organization have been commonplace recently.

Turkish security forces regularly conduct counterterrorism operations in the eastern and southeastern provinces of Turkey, where the PKK has attempted to establish a strong presence. The Turkish Armed Forces (TSK) also carries out cross-border operations in northern Iraq where PKK terrorists have hideouts and bases that they often use as a springboard to carry out attacks on Turkey.

Thanks to these operations, many terrorists have since surrendered to Turkish security forces. Last week, five PKK terrorists surrendered to security forces in southeastern Turkey, according to the Defense Ministry.

In a Twitter post, the ministry said, "4 PKK terrorists, who escaped from [the PKK's] shelter areas in northern Iraq and Syria, have surrendered at our border post in Silopi [a district of Şırnak] and 1 PKK/YPG terrorist to our border post in Kızıltepe [a district of Mardin]."

The dissolution of the PKK has been progressing, according to the tweet.

Turkish counterterrorism operations intensified after July 2018 and have become routine since the beginning of another extensive campaign, Operation Claw, which was launched on May 27 to entirely eliminate the presence of the terrorist organization in northern Iraq.

The number of terrorists in the country has declined to nearly 500 for the first time due to effective anti-terror operations and strategies, the Interior Ministry announced this month.

Underling Turkey's important gains in its war on terror over the last three years, the ministry noted that more than 1,100 terrorists had surrendered of their own volition over this period.

In its more than 30-year terror campaign against Turkey, the PKK, listed as a terrorist organization by Turkey, the U.S. and EU, has been responsible for the deaths of 40,000 people, including women, children and infants. The YPG is the PKK's Syrian offshoot.

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