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Escalating violence, ongoing clashes, curfews and brutal crackdowns on Kurdish nationals have squeezed hundreds of thousands of people out of Turkey’s southeast after Ankara launched a military offensive against the Kurdistan Workers’ Party.

Some 200,000 people have been forced to leave the areas of settlement in Turkey’s south as a result of a special operation which Ankara launched against the outlawed PKK after uneasy ceasefire collapsed in July, Turkish daily Today’s Zaman reports.

The region is undergoing its second largest migration wave since the 1990s, the publication writes. In the Diyarbakir Province’s Sur district alone “tens of thousands” were forced to flee their homes since Ankara imposed the latest strict curfew early December, CNN Turk reported, citing the opposition Republican Peoples Party (CHP).

The area of the Turkish military operation resembles a warzone, local citizens are telling media outlets, while photos and videos posted online show homes, mosques, stores and other buildings badly damaged by clashes. People are saying there is neither water nor electricity supply anymore. Schools are closed and even finding food has become a problem.

The crackdown in the town of Cirze on the Syrian border and other cities, including Diyarbakir and Silopi, escalated in mid-December. Turkish army tanks deployed in Cizre have been shelling buildings in Cizre neighborhoods as seen in the videos posted online. Supposedly targeting the PKK fighters, the shellings reportedly killed at least 16 civilians, according to a local journalist who spoke with RT.

Turkish police forces disrupted mourners at a funeral procession for two members of the Kurdistan Workers’ Party (PKK) in the Sur district of Diyarbakir on Thursday. The two PKK members were killed on Tuesday as part of increased violence between Kurds and Turkish forces following the breakdown of a ceasefire months ago.

Police attacked the crowds with water cannon and tear gas as mourners attempted to march through the district for a walk of solidarity, however their route was commandeered by police trucks attempting to disperse the crowd.

Fierce protests also continue in the region’s largest city, Diyarbakir, where police attacked a rally gathered for the funeral of a local activist killed in protests, another video shows.

Ankara maintains its operation is targeting “separatists” and “terrorists,” with Turkish authorities stating their determination to get rid of the PKK once and for all.

“The fight against separatist terror organizations will continue until the end without hesitation,” Turkish President Recep Tayipp Erdogan said Wednesday.

Up to 10,000 Turkish security forces and army servicemen last week launched a hardcore all-out offensive across the country’s southeast with Kurdish popular majority, aiming to root out the outlawed Kurdistan Workers Party (PKK). The PKK confronts Turkish military both in Turkey and on the territory of Northern Iraq, where Turkish forces conducts unauthorized operations against units of the PKK.

The warring between the two sides have only been growing ever since the two-year ceasefire agreement between Turkish authorities and the PKK collapsed in July following a series of bloody terror acts targeting Kurds. Islamic State terror group basing in Syria and Iraq, where the Kurdish Peshmerga armed militia has been successfully opposing the terrorists, took responsibility for the attacks the Turkish special services failed to prevent.

The Kurds started armed struggle for greater autonomy in southeastern Turkey back in 1984. Turkey’s conflict with PPK, considered as a terrorist group by Turkey, the US and NATO, that has lasted for more than 30 years has claimed lives of about 45,000 people.

 

Thanks to Merkel's Open Door Policy, German economy booming: nationwide sales of pepper spray have jumped by 600%
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