News / Europe

Kurdish Rebels Say Turkish Army is Endangering Peaceful Pullout

Kurdistan Workers Party (PKK) fighters talk to each other as they stand guard at the Qandil mountains near the Iraq-Turkish border in Sulaimaniya, 330 kilometers northeast of Baghdad, Iraq, March 24, 2013.Kurdistan Workers Party (PKK) fighters talk to each other as they stand guard at the Qandil mountains near the Iraq-Turkish border in Sulaimaniya, 330 kilometers northeast of Baghdad, Iraq, March 24, 2013.
x
Kurdistan Workers Party (PKK) fighters talk to each other as they stand guard at the Qandil mountains near the Iraq-Turkish border in Sulaimaniya, 330 kilometers northeast of Baghdad, Iraq, March 24, 2013.
Kurdistan Workers Party (PKK) fighters talk to each other as they stand guard at the Qandil mountains near the Iraq-Turkish border in Sulaimaniya, 330 kilometers northeast of Baghdad, Iraq, March 24, 2013.
Reuters
— Turkey's Kurdish rebels have accused the army of endangering an agreed pullout of rebel fighters from the mostly Kurdish southeast, due to start on Wednesday, with surveillance drones and large-scale movements of men and equipment.

Top Kurdistan Workers' Party [PKK] commander Murat Karayilan ordered his fighters last month to begin withdrawing to bases in northern Iraq as part of a plan to end three decades of conflict with the Turkish state.

However, huge distrust remains. The PKK has not accepted a government demand that its fighters should lay down their weapons before withdrawing, fearing that they could come under attack, as they did in a previous pullback. The army has made clear the suspicion is mutual.

"The constant reconnaissance activity of unmanned aerial vehicles is delaying the withdrawal process," the PKK said in a statement. "The intensifying military shipments and movement in Kurdistan are not just affecting the withdrawal process negatively but laying the ground for provocations and clashes."

The PKK said accelerated construction of military outposts and dams in southeast Turkey also was provocative. It said it still expected the pullout to begin on time, though, with the first groups due in northern Iraq within a week.

Karayilan has warned that PKK fighters will retaliate if the Turkish army launches any kind of operation against them.

The rebels are expected to move in groups of about half a dozen in a process expected to take several months, monitored on the Turkish side by the MIT intelligence agency [Turkey's National Intelligence Organization] and across the border by the Kurdish regional government of northern Iraq.

The step-by-step peace deal negotiated by jailed PKK leader Abdullah Ocalan with Turkish officials appears to offer the best chance yet of ending a conflict that has killed more than 40,000 people, mostly Kurds, and stunted the economy of an entire region.

Turkey appears to have tacitly accepted a certain ambiguity over disarmament to allow the peace process to go ahead - insisting that it must happen, but leaving open how and under whose supervision.

You May Like

Uganda Court Annuls Anti-Gay Law

Court says law was passed in parliament without enough members present for a full quorum More

Multimedia Thailand Makes Efforts to Improve Conditions for Migrant Laborers

In Thailand, its not uncommon for parents to bring their children to work; one company, in-collaboration with other organizations, address safety concerns More

In Indonesia, Jihad Video Raises Concern

Video calls on Indonesians to join Islamic State of Iraq and the Levant, ISIL More

This forum has been closed.
Comment Sorting
Comments
     
by: Ex Turk from: UK
May 07, 2013 11:49 AM
why can't they understand that Turkish Army is just a shell... there is no substance to it any more.

Featured Videos

Your JavaScript is turned off or you have an old version of Adobe's Flash Player. Get the latest Flash player.
In Thailand, Some Efforts to Improve Conditions For Migrant Laborersi
X
Steve Herman
August 01, 2014 6:22 PM
Thailand has been facing increasing international scrutiny as a hub of human trafficking and slave labor. Some of the kingdom’s companies are striving to improve working conditions, especially for the millions of migrant laborers from surrounding countries. VOA Correspondent Steve Herman in Bangkok takes a look at one initiative for children at construction sites
Video

Video In Thailand, Some Efforts to Improve Conditions For Migrant Laborers

Thailand has been facing increasing international scrutiny as a hub of human trafficking and slave labor. Some of the kingdom’s companies are striving to improve working conditions, especially for the millions of migrant laborers from surrounding countries. VOA Correspondent Steve Herman in Bangkok takes a look at one initiative for children at construction sites
Video

Video Public Raises its Voice on Power Plant Pollution

In the United States, proposed rules to cut pollution from the nation’s 600 coal-fired power plants are generating a heated debate. The U.S. Environmental Protection Agency, charged with writing and implementing the plan, has already received 300,000 written comments. As VOA’s Rosanne Skirble reports, another 1,600 people are lining up this week at EPA headquarters and at satellite offices around the country to give their testimony in person.
Video

Video Information War Rages Alongside Real One in Ukraine

The downing of the Malaysian airliner two weeks ago, and allegations that Russians are shelling Ukrainian troops across the border, have moved the information war swirling around the Ukrainian conflict to a new level. VOA's Al Pessin reports from Kyiv.
Video

Video When Fighting Eases, Gazans Line Up at Bakeries

When there is a lull in the conflict in Gaza, residents who have been hunkered down in their apartments rush out to stock up on food and other necessities. Probably the most important destination is the local bakery. VOA’s Scott Bobb reports from Gaza City.
Video

Video China Investigates Powerful Former Security Chief

The public in China is welcoming the Communist Party's decision to investigate one of the country's once most powerful politicians, former domestic security chief Zhou Yongkang. Analysts say the move by President Xi Jinping is not only an effort to win more support for the party, but an essential step to furthering much needed economic reforms and removing those who would stand in the way of change. VOA's Bill Ide has more from Beijing.
Video

Video US-Funded Program Offers Honduran Children Alternative to Illegal Immigration

President Obama and Central American leaders recently agreed to come up with a plan to address poverty and crime in the region that is fueling the surge of young migrants trying to illegally enter the United States. VOA’s Brian Padden looks at one such program in Honduras - funded in part by the United States - which gives street kids not only food and safety but a chance for a better life without, crossing the border.
Video

Video 'Fab Lab' Igniting Revolution in Kenya

The University of Nairobi’s Science and Technology Park is banking on 3-D prototyping to spark a manufacturing revolution in the country. Lenny Ruvaga has more for from Nairobi's so-called “FabLab” for VOA.
Video

Video Immigrant Influx on Texas Border Heats Up Political Debate

Immigrants from Central America continue to cross the U.S.-Mexico border in south Texas, seeking asylum in the United States, as officials grapple with ways to deal with the problem and provide shelter for thousands of minors among the illegal border crossers. As VOA's Greg Flakus reports from Houston, the issue is complicated by internal U.S. politics and U.S. relations with the troubled nations that immigrants are fleeing.

AppleAndroid