Turkish jets hit targets in Syria, Iraq after Istanbul bomb blast


Kurdish fighters report ‘deaths and injuries after Turkish air raids hit Kobane and two villages housing people displaced by war in Syria.

Turkish military planes have hit targets in northern Syria and Iraq, bombing bases Turkey’s defense ministry claimed were used by those behind an explosion in central Istanbul last weekend that killed six people and wounded more than 80.

The Turkish defense ministry announced the launch of the raids in a statement on Twitter on Sunday.

“The hour of reckoning has come,” the Turkish defense ministry tweeted early on Sunday, along with a photo of a military plane taking off on a night-time operation, adding that those who had perpetrated the “treacherous attacks” would be held accountable.

Ankara has blamed the November 13 bomb attack in Istanbul on the outlawed Kurdistan Workers Party (PKK) and affiliated Syrian Kurdish groups. Kurdish fighters have denied involvement.

In another post accompanied by a video showing a target being selected followed by an explosion, the defense ministry said it was using “precision strikes” to destroy “terrorist hotbeds”.

Turkey and the United States both consider the PKK a “terrorist” group, but disagree on the status of the Syrian Kurdish groups that have been allied with Washington in the fight against the ISIL (ISIS) group in Syria.

The US State Department had said on Friday it feared possible military action by Turkey, advising its nationals not to travel to northern Syria and Iraq.


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