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Turkey ends two month anti-PKK military operation in Kurdish town

AFP , Thursday 11 Feb 2016
Turkey's Interior Minister Efkan Ala (Photo: Reuters)

Turkish security forces have ended an almost two-month military operation backed by a curfew in the southeastern town of Cizre against rebels of the Kurdistan Worker's Party (PKK), the interior minister said Thursday.

"The operations in Cizre have been successfully completed as of today," Efkan Ala told state-run TRT television, adding that the curfew would nonetheless continue a little longer.

"Control has been re-established in Cizre and over the terrorists there," he said.

Cizre, in Turkey's Sirnak province near the Iraqi and Syrian border, has been under curfew since December 14, when the army launched an "anti-terror operation" in a bid to root out the PKK from the town's centre where they had erected barricades and dug trenches.

The army said Wednesday some 580 militants had been killed in the town since the operations started.

Kurdish activists claim the campaign has cost dozens of civilian lives and argue the army figure for the number of militants killed is grossly exaggerated.

The PKK has killed dozens of members of the Turkish security forces in attacks since a two-and-a-half-year truce collapsed in July.

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