By Hayati Akcay
ORDU, Turkey (AA) – The targeting of historic mosques by the PKK terrorist group is an embarrassment to mankind, Turkey's vice president of religious affairs said on Saturday.
“It is a big shame for humanity that a terrorist organization has destroyed and plundered mosques,” Yavuz Unal said.
In an exclusive interview with Anadolu Agency, Unal said that PKK destroyed many historical mosques in Turkey’s southeastern and eastern region.
At least 70 mosques faced destruction after they were used by PKK terrorists as a shelter since 2015, Unal added.
“The mosques that suffered heavy damage from recent terrorist PKK attacks in Turkey’s southeast will be restored by the state Religious Affairs Directorate [Diyanet] and an associated foundation,” Unal said.
“However, a dozen of mosques cannot be renovated due to massive damages,” he added.
The PKK -- listed as a terrorist organization also by the U.S., and the EU -- resumed its 30-year armed campaign against the Turkish state in July 2015.
Since then, over 500 security personnel, including troops, police officers, and village guards, have been martyred, and more than 5,000 PKK terrorists killed in operations across Turkey and northern Iraq.
*Anadolu Agency Correspondent Hatice Kesgin contributed to this story from Ankara.