At least 13 Turkish soldiers were killed and six others were injured in
the battle in the southeastern province of Diyarbakir, Middle East Newsline reported. The Turkish Air Force
responded with air strikes in the forests near the Iraqi border, and the
pro-Kurdish Firat news agency said several additional soldiers were killed
Prime Minister Recep Erdogan has been meeting intelligence chiefs and
Army commanders to discuss a sustained response to the PKK assault.
Officials said the prime minister was also being briefed by the interior
minister and security chiefs.
"Turkey will succeed in overcoming the terror and the powers behind it
without compromising democracy, justice and brotherhood," Erdogan said.
Officials said the PKK has launched an offensive in eastern and southern
Turkey. They cited increased incidents of ambushes and abductions, mainly in
the provinces of Diyarbakir and Tunceli.
The Kurdish minority has been angered by court decisions that prevented
inmates elected to parliament in June from being released from prison. The
Kurdish-aligned Peace and Democracy Party and other parties have boycotted
the new parliament and threatened to break from Ankara.
"The Turkish parliament should take the initiative to bring peace,"
Peace and Democratch chairman Selahattin Demirtas said.