Turkey is moving military deeper into Iraq

The Turkish military is moving deeper into northern Iraq, establishing military bases and deploying armed military drones against Kurdish militia, Reuters said on Wednesday, citing an anonymous Turkish official.

Turkey launched Operation Claw-Tiger on June 17, a cross-border ground operation targeting the outlawed Kurdistan Workers' Party (PKK) - which has been fighting an insurgency against the Turkish state for four decades - and its affiliates in various regions of northern Iraq.

Turkish troops have advanced up to 40 km inside Iraq and established over 30 temporary military bases, Reuters said, citing the Turkish official, speaking on condition of anonymity.

“The new approach aims to destroy the threat from where it begins,” the official said.

Tens of thousands of people have been killed in the Turkish state’s conflict with the PKK and Kurdish fighters have largely been directed from within Iraq.

“The operation in Iraq aims to secure Turkey’s border, prevent the passage (of PKK fighters) to Syria, and from there infiltration to Turkey,” Reuters cited a second Turkish official as saying.