SAWT BEIRUT INTERNATIONAL

| 23 May 2024, Thursday |

Turkey says it ‘neutralized’ 18,500 militants over 6 years

The Turkish Defense Ministry stated on Sunday, that Turkey has “neutralized” nearly 18,500 people that it calls “terrorists” over the past six years.
Since the start of this year, that figure was 1,865, spokesperson Maj. Pinar Kara
told journalists in Ankara. The ministry uses the term to describe killed, wounded or captured combatants. The vast majority of the 18,455 neutralized since July 2015 are thought to be members of the Kurdistan Workers’ Party, or PKK, which has waged war on Turkey since 1984. A 2.5-year cease-fire with the PKK – listed as a terrorist organization by the US and the European Union – broke down in 2015.
Turkey targeted the Daesh group after launching its first operation in northern Syria in 2016 but has since largely focused on the PKK and its affiliates in Turkey, Syria and Iraq.
Although the total figure of 40,000 deaths is often cited for the 37-year conflict with the PKK, the International Crisis Group says “the precise figure for the overall casualty toll of the conflict is impossible to confirm.”