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Kurdish Attack Kills Two Turkish Soldiers in Northern Iraq

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Two Turkish soldiers were killed and another was wounded after Kurdish fighters fired rockets at a military base in northern Iraq, Turkey’s Defense Ministry said in a statement on Friday.

Turkey has regularly attacked the Kurdistan Workers Party (PKK), both in its mainly Kurdish southeast and in northern Iraq, where the group is based.

The ministry said “harassment fire” by rocket launchers on Thursday killed the two troops at one of Turkey’s bases in neighboring Iraq.

In June, Ankara launched a new ground offensive, dubbed Operation Claw-Tiger, that saw Turkish troops advance deeper into Iraq, Reuters reported.

In a separate statement, the Interior Ministry said 71 PKK militants had been killed since July 13 as part of a series of operations within Turkey, dubbed the “Lightning Operations”, and added 38 collaborators had also been captured.

The PKK, designated a terrorist group by Turkey, the US and the European Union, took up arms against the Turkish state in 1984. More than 40,000 people have been killed in the conflict focused in southeast Turkey.