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Turkey, Iraq, Pledge to Continue Fight Against Kurdish Rebels


The prime ministers of Turkey and Iraq have agreed to maintain cooperation in fighting separatist Kurdish rebels based in northern Iraq.

Turkey's prime minister, Recep Tayyip Erdogan, and his Iraqi counterpart, Nouri al-Maliki, discussed the fight against the rebel Kurdistan Workers' Party, or PKK, in talks Wednesday in Ankara.

Mr. Erdogan said terrorism is a common concern of Turkey and Iraq.

Mr. Maliki expressed support for a committee that Turkey, Iraq and the United States formed last month to combat the PKK. He also discussed the situation with Turkish President Abdullah Gul.

In violence Wednesday, Turkey's military said three soldiers were killed and at least 13 injured in an attack by Kurdish rebels in the Turkish town of Cizre near the Iraqi border.

Turkish warplanes have bombed suspected rebel hideouts in northern Iraq in response to PKK assaults on Turkish soldiers. The United States and Iraq have warned the conflict could destabilize northern Iraq.

The PKK has been fighting for Kurdish autonomy in southeastern Turkey for nearly a quarter-century. At least 37,000 people have been killed in the conflict.

Turkey, the European Union and the United States classify the PKK as a terrorist group.

Some information for this report was provided by Reuters.

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