5 more PKK terrorists surrender to Turkish security forces

5 more PKK terrorists surrender to Turkish security forces

Five PKK terrorists surrendered to Turkish security forces as a result of persuasion efforts, the Interior Ministry said Sunday.

In a statement, the ministry said the terrorists joined the PKK between the years 1999 to 2016 and were active in Iraq and Syria.

With the latest additions, the number of terrorists who have laid down their arms through persuasion efforts this year now stands at 151, it added.

In Turkey, offenders linked to terrorist groups who surrender are eligible for possible sentence reductions under a repentance law.

Last year, 243 PKK terrorists surrendered to Turkish security forces, according to Interior Minister Süleyman Soylu.

Turkey’s counterterrorism efforts continue decisively through the coordination of the Turkish Armed Forces (TSK), the National Intelligence Organization (MIT), Gendarmerie General Command, the police force and local units.

Over the last four years, the number of PKK terrorists in Turkey has plunged by 83%.

The PKK’s leadership is struggling to recruit both militants and higher ranks, according to reports. Additionally, many terrorists are reluctant to enter Turkey from Iraq to carry out attacks due to the high number of casualties.

The PKK terrorist group once had over 5,500 members, said Soylu, but as of 2020, only 53 people joined, down from 132 in 2019. A mere two people joined the terrorist group in 2021, he added.

In recent years, Turkey has stepped up operations at home and across its borders against the terrorist group and has also convinced an increasing number of its members to quit the PKK.

Turkish security forces regularly conduct counterterrorism operations in Turkey’s eastern and southeastern provinces where the PKK has attempted to establish bases and a strong presence. The forces also conduct cross-border operations in northern Iraq, a region where PKK terrorists have hideouts and bases from which they carry out attacks on Turkey. Turkey launched Operations Claw-Tiger and Claw-Eagle in June 2020 to ensure the safety of Turkish citizens and the country’s national borders by eliminating terrorist threats.

In its more than 40-year terror campaign against Turkey, the PKK – listed as a terrorist organization by Turkey, the United States and the European Union – has been responsible for the deaths of 40,000 people, including women, children and infants.

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