Turkey on Wednesday rejected claims by Iraqi state media that it attacked a mountain resort in Iraq’s northern Dohuk province, killing eight tourists and injuring 23.
A resort in Zakho, a town on the border between Iraq’s Kurdistan region and Turkey, was hit by “horrific artillery bombardment”, Iraq State TV said.
The Kurdish health minister said in a statement that the victims included a one-year-old child. All the victims died before reaching the hospital.
“We go to the mountain, there are attacks. We go to the waterfall, there are attacks. We go to this side, there are attacks,” said 24-year-old Mustafa Ala, when attacked. Happened. ,
Ala said, “We pulled down the fence around the waterfall. We looked inside, I saw children lying on the ground. It’s a sight I’ve never seen in my life.”
Turkey’s Foreign Ministry said that Ankara was saddened to hear of the casualties in the attack and said Turkey has avoided civilian casualties or damage to historic cultural sites in its counter-terrorism operations against Kurdistan Workers’ Party (PKK) militias and others. Took maximum care to avoid.
“Turkey stands ready to take every step to reveal the truth,” the ministry said in a statement. Turkish military operations were in line with international laws.
“We ask the Iraqi government not to make comments influenced by the rhetoric and propaganda of the heinous terrorist organization and to cooperate in exposing the perpetrators of this brutal act,” he said, referring to the PKK.
Turkey regularly conducts air strikes in northern Iraq and sends commandos to support its attacks as part of a long-running campaign in Iraq and Syria against militants from the Kurdish PKK and Syrian Kurdish YPG militias. Ankara considers both to be terrorist groups.
The PKK took up arms against the Turkish state in 1984. More than 40,000 people have been killed in the conflict, which in the past focused mainly on southeast Turkey where the PKK sought to create an ethnic homeland.
The top UN envoy in Iraq condemned Wednesday’s attack in a statement published on Twitter and called for an investigation.