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175 PKK rebels killed in Turkish strikes
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Turkish warplanes had killed about 150-175 militants of the outlawed Kurdish Workers' Party (PKK) in the military operations in northern Iraq on Dec. 16, said a statement issued by the Turkish General Staff on Tuesday.


According to the statement, the number did not include rebels who were killed in hide-outs and caves that crumbled, as well as those injured who were sent to hospitals.


The statement said three command and two communications centers, two training centers, nine logistics centers, 182 hide-outs and caves, 10 anti-aircraft defense sites and 14 ammunition storages, which belonged to the PKK, were completely destroyed.


The statement posted on its Web site said that Turkey's military has hit more than 200 PKK targets in northern Iraq since Dec. 16, killing hundreds of rebels.


On Dec. 16, Turkish warplanes carried out air strikes at some villages near the border in the Qandil mountains, which was reported then to have killed one woman and wounded six other people.


The statement also said other hideouts were hit in a cross-border air operation on Dec. 22, followed by artillery fire.


The Turkish military has recently launched several cross-border attacks to fight separatist PKK rebels, who use northern Iraq as a launch pad for attacks against Turkey.


The PKK, listed by the United States and Turkey as a terrorist group, took up arms against Turkey in 1984 with the aim of creating an ethnic homeland in the southeast. More than 30,000 people have been killed in the over-two-decade conflict.


(Xinhua News Agency December 26, 2007)

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