The United Sates will share with Turkey its intelligence on
Kurdish rebel positions along the border with Iraq, Pentagon said
By doing this, the US government can help the Turkish government
"get actionable intelligence," Pentagon press secretary Geoff
Morrell told reporters.
"The key for any sort of any military response, by the Turks or
anybody else, is actionable intelligence," he added.
Turkey has vowed to take all necessary measures against the
Kurdish rebels, including a possible incursion into northern Iraq
after dozens of Turkish soldiers were recently killed by Kurdistan
Workers' Party (PKK) militants.
Over the past week, the Turkish army has stepped up military
operations against the PKK in the border area.
President George W. Bush told his Turkish counterpart Abdullah
Gul by telephone last week that the United States supports Turkey's
efforts to counter deadly attacks by the PKK, and "actionable
intelligence is something that we can provide."
US Defense Secretary Robert Gates last week also said it did not
make sense for the Turks to send its forces across the border or
dropping bombs "without good intelligence."
As a matter of fact, the United States has shared "lots of
intelligence" with the Turks for a long time, but has stepped up
the intelligence-sharing recently, Morrell said.
"We have given them intelligence with regards to this situation
for a long time. We have given them more and more intelligence as a
result of their recent concerns."
The US government urged the Turkish government to show more
restraint on operations against the PKK, and Iraq to take action
against the outlawed militants.
Stressing that the United States regards the PKK as a terrorist
organization, State Secretary spokesman Sean McCormack said that
the best way to solve the issue "is for the Turks and the Iraqis to
work together to mitigate it and eliminate it."
Despite reports that the US military has considered launching
cruise missiles against PKK targets, top US commander in northern
Iraq Maj. Gen. Benjamin Mixon said on Friday that his forces will
do "absolutely nothing" to the PKK.
He reaffirmed that US forces should not be involved in the
ongoing fight between PKK and Turkey and the issue should be
settled through diplomacy.
The PKK, listed as a terrorist organization by Turkey, the
United States and the European Union, launched an armed campaign
for an ethnic homeland in the mainly Kurdish southeastern Turkey in
1984, sparking decades of strife that has claimed more than 30,000
(Xinhua News Agency November 1, 2007)