Turkish PM urges Iraq to curb PKK based in northern Iraq

Team Infidel

Forum Spin Doctor
Media: Xinhua
Byline: n/a
Date: 9 August 2006

ANKARA -- Turkish Prime Minister Recep Tayyip Erdogan on Wednesday urged
Iraq to take action to curb the outlawed Kurdish Workers' Party (PKK) based
in northern Iraq, the semi-official Anatolia news agency reported.
"North of Iraq must not be a shelter for the PKK and the Kurdish rebels
must be declared as a terrorist organization," Erdogan said during a
meeting with visiting Iraqi Deputy President Tariq al-Hashimi in Istanbul,
the largest city of Turkey.
Hashimi, for his part, said that his country would not allow separatist
acts of PKK that would cause uneasiness in Turkey, vowing to exert all
efforts to prevent such acts.
Turkey says thousands of armed PKK militants have taken refuge in
northern Iraq since 1999, using the Iraqi Kurdish-run region as a base to
launch attacks on Turkish territory.
On Aug. 2, Iraqi President Jalal Talabani said that his country "will do
its utmost to stop the PKK from using Iraqi land against Turkey", adding
that he had already closed some offices for pro- PKK groups.
As for the peace process in Iraq, Erdogan underlined that protection of
Iraq's territorial integrity and unity is very important.
Shiite-Sunni conflict was very dangerous and "Arabians must avoid of
this conflict," the Turkish prime minister said, adding that participation
of Sunnis in elections had started to yield positive results.
Erdogan's comments were echoed by Hashimi, who arrived in Turkey on
Friday on a week-long visit.
More than 30,000 people have been killed since the PKK, which was listed
as a terrorist organization by Turkey, the United States and the European
Union, launched an armed campaign for an ethnic homeland in southeastern
Turkey in 1984.