Friday, March 28, 2008

Signs Of Turkish Front Heating Back Up

By Cernig

As if US and Iraqi government forces didn't have enough troubles in Southern Iraq, there are signs that the Northern border may be heating up again.

After Turkish crackdowns on Kurdish protesters recently, the PKK have vowed to retaliate. And now there are signs that the Turkish military are gearing up to mount a major offensive after the Spring thaw, following up on their reconnaissance in force in February:

A convoy of 250 Turkish military trucks and civilian buses is headed toward the border with Iraq, nearly a month after a Turkish cross-border operation against Kurdish rebels, a news agency reported Thursday.

The vehicles approached the border village of Derecik in Hakkari province on Wednesday evening, Dogan news agency said. The vehicles traveled with their headlights off, according to a news agency reporter who saw the convoy.

Helicopters also ferried dozens of troops to the border from the town of Semdinli on Thursday morning, Dogan said.

It was the largest reported activity by the Turkish military near the Iraqi border since Turkey ended an eight-day incursion into Iraq on Feb. 29.