facebook
twitter
rss
account
search
search
 

PKK starts phased withdrawal from Turkey

April 22, 2013 at 9:14 AM   |   Comments

ANKARA, Turkey, April 22 (UPI) -- The outlawed Kurdistan Workers' Party said it has begun steps to leave Turkey.

The movement, known by its Kurdish initials PKK, said about 30 fighters began operations that would culminate in the withdrawal from Turkish territory, Turkish daily newspaper Today's Zaman reports.

Jailed PKK leader Abdullah Ocalan called on militants to lay down their weapons and abandon Turkish positions. Those steps would lead to an end of a conflict that's been going on since the 1980s.

The Turkish report states that PKK fighters are collecting in a staging area in Turkey before leaving the country "in the following weeks."

The Turkish government said it wouldn't provide direct security guarantees to PKK members as they start to leave. A PKK retreat in 1999 was bombed by the Turkish military.

The Turkish government said the national intelligence agency would oversee the withdrawal. Actual security would be left to provincial authorities.

The European Union said it welcomed the PKK initiative. The Turkish government has pressed for closer association with the European Union.

© 2013 United Press International, Inc. All Rights Reserved. Any reproduction, republication, redistribution and/or modification of any UPI content is expressly prohibited without UPI's prior written consent.
Recommended UPI Stories
Most Popular
1
Merkel urges Putin to withdraw Russian troops from Ukraine Merkel urges Putin to withdraw Russian troops from Ukraine
2
Lindsey Graham fears ISIS will come kill us all, in a not at all hysterical way Lindsey Graham fears ISIS will come kill us all, in a not at all hysterical way
3
Rush Limbaugh: Women actually are consenting when they say 'no' Rush Limbaugh: Women actually are consenting when they say 'no'
4
Venezuela's Socialist Party unveils new prayer 'Our Chavez who art in heaven' Venezuela's Socialist Party unveils new prayer 'Our Chavez who art in heaven'
5
New York state man accused of helping Islamic State New York state man accused of helping Islamic State
Trending News
Video
x
Feedback