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Turkey 'bombs PKK' in Iraq as well as ISIL in Syria

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By Alasdair Sandford  with REUTERS
Turkey 'bombs PKK' in Iraq as well as ISIL in Syria

<p>Turkey is reported to have launched attacks on Kurdish militant bases in northern Iraq – on top of its <a href="http://www.euronews.com/2015/07/24/turkey-a-change-of-heart-about-is/">first strikes against <span class="caps">ISIL</span> in Syria</a>.</p> <p>Several local agencies say Turkish jets targeted <span class="caps">PKK</span> camps.</p> <blockquote class="twitter-tweet" lang="en"><p lang="en" dir="ltr">Turkish jets simultaneously target <span class="caps">PKK</span> bases in Northern Iraq <a href="https://twitter.com/euronews"><code>euronews</a></p>&mdash; Bora Bayraktar (</code>Bora_Bayraktar) <a href="https://twitter.com/Bora_Bayraktar/status/624685743991091200">July 24, 2015</a></blockquote> <script async src="//platform.twitter.com/widgets.js" charset="utf-8"></script> <blockquote class="twitter-tweet" lang="en"><p lang="en" dir="ltr"><a href="https://twitter.com/hashtag/BREAKING?src=hash">#BREAKING</a> <a href="https://twitter.com/hashtag/StopTerorristTurky?src=hash">#StopTerorristTurky</a> Turkish warplanes are striking <a href="https://twitter.com/hashtag/PKK?src=hash">#PKK</a> bases near Amedi in <a href="https://twitter.com/hashtag/Kurdistan?src=hash">#Kurdistan</a> Its <a href="https://twitter.com/hashtag/TrickTurkey?src=hash">#TrickTurkey</a> <a href="http://t.co/LXtkhD7Zzz">pic.twitter.com/LXtkhD7Zzz</a></p>— Peshmerga (@KURDISTAN_ARMY) <a href="https://twitter.com/KURDISTAN_ARMY/status/624687489102426112">July 24, 2015</a></blockquote> <script async src="//platform.twitter.com/widgets.js" charset="utf-8"></script> <p>If confirmed, it is likely to mark a major blow to the already-stalled peace process with the Kurds.</p> <p>Turkey has also agreed to allow the US to use a key airbase to stage attacks against the self-styled Islamic State.</p> <p>Previously Ankara has been a reluctant partner against <span class="caps">ISIL</span> but now says <br /> Damascus is neither willing nor able to tackle the jihadists.</p> <blockquote class="twitter-tweet" lang="en"><p lang="en" dir="ltr">Press Release Concerning <a href="https://twitter.com/hashtag/Turkey?src=hash">#Turkey</a>-<a href="https://twitter.com/hashtag/US?src=hash">#US</a> Understanding On Countering <a href="https://twitter.com/hashtag/DEASH?src=hash">#DEASH</a> <a href="http://t.co/iPmVofJjSW">http://t.co/iPmVofJjSW</a></p>— Turkish <span class="caps">MFA</span> (@MFATurkey) <a href="https://twitter.com/MFATurkey/status/624619410985127936">July 24, 2015</a></blockquote> <script async src="//platform.twitter.com/widgets.js" charset="utf-8"></script> <p>Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan said there was a need to fight Kurdish separatists and the Islamists.</p> <p>“We are in a different struggle from now on. We will do whatever is needed in this struggle. Our nation should trust their state,” he said.</p> <p>His comments come amid an escalation of violence along the border.</p> <p>The suspected <a href="http://www.euronews.com/2015/07/21/what-is-behind-turkey-s-suruc-attack/"><span class="caps">ISIL</span> bombing of a Kurdish border town</a> which killed more than 30 people brought protests and clashes between demonstrators and police in Istanbul on Friday.</p> <p>Turkey’s Kurds believe the government has not done enough to protect their community from jihadist violence.</p> <p>Police have arrested 297 people in raids across Turkey targeting the alleged supporters of militant groups, including <span class="caps">ISIL</span>.</p> <p>Youth members of the outlawed Kurdistan Workers’ Party, or <span class="caps">PKK</span>, and of a far-left group were also detained.</p> <p>Erdogan’s critics say he is fearful that Kurdish gains against <span class="caps">ISIL</span> in Syria’s civil war may embolden Turkey’s own large Kurdish minority.</p>