On April 6, the Kurdistan Workers’ Party (PKK) announced in an official statement that its fighters had attacked a position of the Turkish Army in the village of Khuakrak in the Sidekan district in the northern Iraqi province of Erbil. According to the PKK’s statement, ten soldiers of the Turkish Army were killed in the attack.
The PKK also claimed that its fighters had killed two other Turkish soldiers in a hit and run attack on a position of the Turkish Army in the village of Lolan in the Sidekan district.
Following these attacks, warplanes of the Turkish Air Force (TAF) conducted a series of airstrikes on positions of the PKK in northern Iraq, according to Kurdish sources. The Turkish Army General Staff said that thirteen positions of the PKK in the Qandil region had been destroyed and fourteen PKK fighters had been “neutralized” in these airstrikes.
The Turkish Army has stepped up its operations against the PKK in northern Iraq since the end of March. The Turkish Army revealed on April 7 that its forces had “neutralized” 77 fighters of the PKK inside Iraqi territory during the last week only.
Iraqi officials have protested the Turkish violation of Iraq sovereignty on numerous occasions. The PKK even began a voluntarily withdrawal from northern Iraq last week. However, Turkey went on with its cross-border operations, which led many observers to believe that Turkey’s goals in northern Iraq are not limited to fighting the PKK.