Turkey initiates military action into Iraq
Feb 22,2008 00:00 by UPI

BAGHDAD - The Turkish military launched a ground operation against specific Kurdistan Workers Party targets in northern Iraq.

Turkey has been engaging in cross-border missions against the rebel group, known by its Kurdish language initials PKK, after it attacked Turkish targets from bases in the Kurdish region of northern Iraq, CNN reported Friday.

The PKK action came after Turkish soldiers shelled abandoned villages north of Irbil, the capital of Iraq's Kurdish Regional Government.

Iraqi Foreign Minister Hoshyar Zebari, a Kurd, told the BBC he was unaware of any incursion. He said he had been in touch with people in northern Iraq, Istanbul and the United States.

Meanwhile, Iraqi Prime Minister Nouri al-Maliki and his Turkish counterpart Recep Tayyip Erdogan spoke by phone about the security and stability of Turkey, the Kuwaiti news agency KUNA reported.

Maliki said the "terrorist Kurdistan Workers Party is posing a threat on Turkey and border areas," government spokesman Ali Dabbagh said.

Iraqi President Jalal Talabani talked with Turkish President Abdullah Gul about enhancing relations between the two countries, KUNA reported. Gul invited Talabani to visit Turkey.

PKK is listed as a terrorist organization by the U.S. State Department.

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