Sunday, November 4, 2007

PKK rebels 'free Turkish troops'

PKK rebels 'free Turkish troops'

Kurdish fighters are reported to have freed eight Turkish soldiers they captured two weeks ago in an ambush near the Iraqi border.
A spokesman for the Kurdistan Workers' Party (PKK) said the men had been handed over to Iraqi Kurdish officials.

It comes a day after the Iraqi government vowed to act against rebels attacking Turkish territory from Iraq.

The PKK intensified its military campaign last month, raising the threat of retaliation from Turkey.
Turkish threat

PKK spokesman Abdul Rahman Chaderchi told the AFP news agency the eight soldiers had been handed over at 0730 Iraqi time (0430 GMT).
The spokesman refused to say where the release had taken place, but added the soldiers were in good health and had been released unconditionally.

The men were captured two weeks ago in a PKK ambush in which at least 12 Turkish soldiers were killed.

The Ankara government threatened to launch cross-border operations if the Iraqi government did not take action against the PKK, but as yet has not followed up on its threat.

Iraq has vowed to defend its territory against Turkish attacks, but also promised action against PKK rebel leaders launching raids into Turkey.


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