Militant killed in clash, PKK releases hostages

A district commander of the outlawed Kurdistan Workers’ Party, or PKK, has been killed in an armed engagement between government forces and PKK members in the Pazarcık district in the eastern province of Kahramanmaraş.

Military operations are underway in the southern province of Kahramanmaraş to intercept the militants of the outlawed Kurdistan Workers’ Party, according to reports. DHA photo

Military operations are underway in the southern province of Kahramanmaraş to intercept the militants of the outlawed Kurdistan Workers’ Party, according to reports. DHA photo

“One terrorist was captured dead in the ensuing clash. Security forces are continuing their efforts to intercept the fleeing terrorists,” said Kahramanmaraş Gov. Şükrü Kocatep on Monday, adding that security forces found various explosive materials on the militant.

The dead militant, identified as Sadık Kaya, was the PKK’s Pazarcık district commander, codenamed “Rojhad.” Kaya may have been involved in an attack on the police on Sept. 13 in Pazarcık, according to reports.

PKK members opened fire on gendarmerie forces who were scanning the area around 9:30 p.m. After the arrival of reinforcements on the scene, the engagement lasted until around 11 p.m. when PKK militants began retreating into a nearby forest.

Meanwhile, the PKK announced Monday that it would release a dozen teachers it kidnapped in late September, according to the Fırat news agency, or ANF, which is known for its close links to the PKK. The statement also denounced the government for its alleged policies of Turkification in the southeast through the education system it established in the region.

The PKK on Sunday also released eight people kidnapped on Sept. 8. Four village guards were kidnapped by the group in the Beytüşşebap district of Şırnak province, while another eight workers were abducted from a dam construction site in Siirt.

Compiled from Doðan news agency and Anatolia news agency stories by the Daily News staff.

Monday, October 3, 2011
KAHRAMANMARAŞ / ŞIRNAK