Turkey strengthens border outposts following deadly PKK attack08/08/2012 21:27
ERBIL, Aug. 8 (AKnews) – Turkish authorities are planning to strengthen military outposts on border with Iraq and Iran following a deadly attack by the Kurdistan Workers Party (PKK) rebels on three outposts in Semdinli district of Hakkari province, southeast Turkey, which killed six Turkish soldiers and two pro-government village guards.
He plans include the construction of new high-security outposts in place of the old one that were built years ago to control smuggling. The new outposts are not vulnerable to the PKK rebels, according to the officials.
Turkey’s Environment and Urban Planning minister Erdogan Bayraktar has said that 98 new military outposts have been constructed so far and handed over to the Ministry of Defense and the Gendarmerie General Command recently.
The move comes in reaction to rising criticism in Turkey that the military outposts located in the southeast of the country’s mountainous areas were not safe for the military.
“Previously we planned to construct 44 outposts for the Ministry of Defense and 118 for the Gendarmerie General Command” but the number was raised to 243, the minister has said.
PKK is a Kurdish rebel group that has been fighting the Turkish state for three decades. The group sought an independent Kurdish state in the south east of the country; however, in recent it changed demands to an autonomous Kurdish region within Turkey.
The fight between PKK and Turkey has claimed the lives of more than 45,000 people. The group is listed as a terrorist organization by Turkey, US and some EU countries.