Two days after Turkish president Recep Tayyip Erdoğan and Iraqi Kurdistan Region prime minister Masrour Barzani met in Istanbul, Turkey launched a new cross border military operation into Iraqi Kurdistan on Sunday, Fırat News Agency (ANF) reported.
The press communication centre of the People’s Defence Forces (HPG), the armed wing of the Kurdistan Workers’ Party (PKK), said in a statement:
“Turkey launched an invasion into Şikefta Birîndara, Kurêjaro [Kurazhar] and Çiyayê Reş in the Zap region. Areas have been hit in airstrikes, and the Turkish army is now trying to deploy airborne units by helicopters. The assault has been launched not from the north, but from the Bamarni-Amedi strip on the south, and across Sheladiz [Shiladze].”
The Turkish attack was reportedly carried out with the participation of attack helicopters and Sikorsky helicopters.
ANF later reported around 11:45 PM that some Turkish airborne troops were deployed in Kurêjaro, and clashes between the troops and Kurdish fighters ensued.
Turkish defence minister Hulusi Akar said in a statement that ‘Operation Claw – Lock’ was launched into the regions of Metina, Zap and Avasin-Basyan against PKK, and targets were hit first in air strikes, then by artillery fire, and troops were deployed by helicopters under the assistance of drones.