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2 killed in northern Iraq airstrike blamed on Turkey

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Two people were killed Tuesday in an airstrike in northern Iraq that was blamed on Turkey, Agence France-Presse reported, citing security and health officials.

Turkey frequently carries out ground and air offensives on positions of the outlawed Kurdistan Workers’ Party (PKK) — which has waged a decades-long war against the Turkish state — in northern Iraq.

“Two civilians were killed and another injured in a Turkish airstrike” on a remote village in the mountainous region of Akre in Dohuk province, a security official said, requesting anonymity as they were not authorized to speak to the media.

A health official in the region confirmed the death toll and said that two others were wounded. He didn’t specify if those killed were civilians.

The Turkish military rarely comments on its operations in Iraq.

Turkey has over the past 25 years operated several dozen military bases in northern Iraq in its war against the PKK.

A Turkish soldier was killed and another injured in an “attempted intrusion” of a Turkish military base in northern Iraq blamed on the PKK, Turkey’s defense ministry said on Saturday.

Attacks on Turkish military bases in northern Iraq in December and January killed 18 soldiers.

Both Baghdad and the regional government of the Iraqi Kurdistan region have been accused of tolerating Turkey’s military activities to preserve their close economic ties.

In October Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdoğan said his country would “continue to intensify” its strikes against the PKK in Iraq and neighboring Syria, which Ankara and its Western allies consider a “terrorist” group.

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