Türkiye eliminates top PKK/KCK terrorist in northern Iraq - M5 Dergi
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Türkiye eliminates top PKK/KCK terrorist in northern Iraq

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The National Intelligence Organization (MIT) on Thursday announced that it eliminated a “high-ranking” member of the PKK/KCK terrorist group in a pinpoint operation in the northern Iraqi region of Gara.

Ahmet Gümüş, codenamed “Cudi Engizek,” had been the so-called training officer of the KCK/PKK terrorists since 2022, the agency said, noting that he had been under surveillance since 2022 before being “neutralized.”

He joined the organization in 1999 and had a hand in planning and implementing numerous bomb attacks and assassinations carried out in Türkiye, as well as Iraq and Syria until 2007.

By 2008, Gümüş moved to lead the group’s training “academies” in Syria where he raised terrorists. After 2016, he began serving as a bodyguard to Murat Karayılan, the PKK’s de-facto leader, until last year.

From 2022 onward, he commanded the so-called “Apollo Academies” of the PKK/KCK in northern Iraq.

Gümüş was considered among the group’s best assassins professionally trained in Greece.

The operation marks the third high-profile terrorist Türkiye has eliminated in recent months, discounting the hundreds of other terrorists taken out in domestic and cross-border security operations since the start of the year.

The Turkish intelligence agency has stepped up its operations abroad in recent years to stamp out terrorist activities in Iraq and Syria, Türkiye’s two southeastern neighbors.

In 2022 alone, 23 senior figures of the terrorist group backed by the United States in Syria were eliminated in MIT’s operations in the two countries, while a large number of PKK members were transported to Türkiye.

Since 2018, more than 100 terrorists have been eliminated by Turkish intelligence forces. In February, a PKK member behind a terrorist attack on Istanbul’s Istiklal Street last year was killed in another MIT operation in Syria.

The PKK is responsible for over 40,000 civilian and security personnel deaths in Türkiye during an almost four-decadelong campaign of terror and Türkiye has been conducting military operations in northern Iraq since 2019, with both ground and air forces, to battle the organization.

In the last few years, the operations intensifying in northern Iraq have demolished terrorist lairs in Metina, Avashin-Basyan, Zap and Gara. After eradicating the group’s influence in these regions, Türkiye also aims to clear Qandil, Sinjar and Makhmour.

Its military involvement in northern Iraq dates back over two decades, separately from its operations against the PKK, included also the war against the Daesh terrorist group, which controlled much of the area, in 2014 and 2015, when Ankara was an ally in the U.S.-led anti-Daesh campaign.

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