Three Turkish soldiers have been killed during military operations in Northern Iraq, the Defence Ministry said on Thursday.
The casualties came after Turkey announced on Wednesday the resumption of its campaign against the outlawed Kurdistan Workers’ Party (PKK) in Northern Iraq, clashing with the group in the Gara region of Dohuk province.
Two soldiers were killed and four wounded in the first day of clashes, one of which later died from his injuries, the defence ministry said.
Turkey relaunched the joint Claw-Eagle and Claw-Tiger operations, cross-border ground and air offensives targeting the PKK in various parts of Northern Iraq in 2019, part of long-running efforts to dislodge the group from the border region.
The PKK has a large base in the Qandil mountains which straddle the border, where a U.N.-run refugee camp is also situated for civilians who Turkey during the height of the conflict with PKK in the 1990s. The group, designated a terrorist organisation by Turkey, the United States and the European Union, also has several bases and encampments scattered throughout the wider area.
Turkey and the PKK have been engaged in a four decades-long war which has caused more than 40,000 deaths, since 1984.