Ankara, October 12, 2016/Independent Balkan News Agency
The Turkish Armed Forces (TSK) has intensified its military deployment close to the Iraqi border in an ostensible move to both support ongoing operations against the outlawed Kurdistan Workers’ Party (PKK) and increase border security, Doğan News Agency has reported.
Military vehicles coming from Mardin entered military commands near the Habur Border Gate while others were dispatched to commands in the mountainside across from the Turkish-Iraqi border, the agency said.
The latest dispatch aimed to oversee the effects of a migration wave at the border that could emerge after a possible military operation on Mosul, as well as providing support to anti-PKK operations in the region.
The security for the military vehicles was provided by a number of armed vehicles in addition to Jammer-carrying military vehicles against the potential threat of remote explosives.
Meanwhile, Chief of General Staff Gen. Hulusi Akar, accompanied by force commanders, paid a two-day visit to three southeastern provinces to make inspections on deployments at military commands in the region where operations against PKK militants are continuing.
Akar and force commanders first visited Şırnak and met with Şırnak Gov. Ali İhsan Su at the governor’s office, while also visiting troops in the region to make inspections.
Akar and commanders later departed for the Yüksekova and Şemdinli districts of the eastern province of Hakkari and met with Yüksekova District Gov. İbrahim Çenet.
They later headed to the eastern province of Van to make inspections of military troops in the Başkale district.
Meanwhile, the death toll in the Oct. 9 PKK suicide attack targeting a military checkpoint in the Şemdinli district of the eastern province of Hakkari rose to 16 with the death of another civilian.
Yaşar Sönmez, 34, succumbed to his injures in the Gülhane Military Hospital in Ankara on Oct. 12, bringing the number of civilian casualties in the attack to six. Ten soldiers were also killed in the suicide attack, which was carried out with a bomb-laden pickup.
In addition, the Turkish military said in a statement that a PKK militant, who had a 1 million Turkish Lira prize on his head, was killed while another PKK militant was wounded.
The military said the militant identified as M.N.Ö. and codenamed Rojhat Vartinus, who was the alleged commander responsible for the Güroymak district of the eastern province of Bitlis, was killed in an operation on Oct. 11.
It also added that another PKK militant identified as N.B. and codenamed Aras was also captured wounded in the operation.
One Infanty rifle and one Kalashnikov were also seized along with the militants, the military said.
In addition, one soldier was killed and two others were wounded on Oct. 12 during clashes with PKK militants in the Besta region of Şırnak. The wounded were taken to Şırnak State Hospital as an air-supported operation in the region continued.
The Bitlis Governor’s Office also announced a curfew in five villages of the Tatvan district until further notice as of midnight on Oct. 12.