Turkey has widened its military incursion into neighboring northern Iraq. The operation, which started on Wednesday, came in response to the killing of 24 Turkish soldiers in attacks by the rebel Kurdistan Workers’ Party, or PKK, some of whom are based across the border in Iraq. Outrage over the killings among the Turkish public continues to grow.
Hundreds of people chanted “Death to the PKK,” as they marched down Istanbul’s main street. One demonstrator expressed his anger over the killings. He said the PKK are evil and that people are out to support their 24 martyrs. He said the PKK will never divide Turkey and that you can never kill enough of them.
Similar protests against the PKK are occurring across the country. Wednesday’s attacks by the rebel group were the deadliest since 1993 and have shocked the country.
Radio stations played somber music and television stations cancelled comedies as an unofficial day of mourning was observed by many in Turkey. Houses and shops raised the Turkish flag as anger has led to a wave of nationalism that is being fueled by continuous news coverage of Turkey’s ongoing military incursion into neighboring northern Iraq.