3 Turkish soldiers killed in PKK attacks in Iraq, Turkey

3 Turkish soldiers killed in PKK attacks in Iraq, Turkey

Ankara: Three Turkish soldiers were killed on Thursday in two separate attacks by Kurdish militants in northern Iraq and in southeastern Turkey, the military said.

Two other soldiers were wounded after the attack by the "separatist terrorist organisation" -- Turkey's official term for the outlawed Kurdistan Workers' Party (PKK) in northern Iraq, the army said in a statement.

The PKK is blacklisted as a terror organisation by Ankara and its Western allies.

Meanwhile, in an earlier attack, one soldier was killed and five were wounded after an attack near a military base in the Cukurca district of Hakkari province.

Earlier Turkish media reported two Turkish soldiers were killed in an attack in Hakkari's Semdinli district -- which appeared to be a separate incident -- blamed on the PKK launching a missile from northern Iraq. But the army did not refer to this attack in its statements.

The deaths come a day after the army said one Turkish soldier was killed in an attack in the eastern province of Agri.

Following the collapse of a two-year ceasefire in 2015, fighting has intensified between Turkish security forces and the PKK in the southeast.

The Turkish military regularly conducts air raids against PKK militants who have bases in the Qandil mountain area of Iraq.

Turkish ground troops also sometimes stage incursions into the area.

Ankara on January 20 launched a cross-border operation in northern Syria against a Syrian Kurdish militia which Ankara says is a "terrorist" offshoot of the PKK.