By Halil Ibrahim Sincar, Ekrem Payan and Mehmet Arif Altunkaynak
MARDIN / SIRNAK, Turkey (AA) - With schools reopening, tens of thousands of students in southeastern Turkey will start make-up classes on Monday after their lessons were disrupted by YPG/PKK terrorist attacks into civilian settlements.
The YPG, the Syrian offshoot of the PKK terror group, which has terrorized Turkey for decades, started directly targeting civilian settlements with mortars and rockets fired from northern Syria following the start of Turkey’s anti-terror campaign in northern Syria.
As a result, over 44,400 students in border areas – 31,500 in Mardin and nearly 13,000 in Sirnak – missed out on valuable class time, necessitating make-up lessons starting this week, when many other students in Turkey are on break.
Since the start of Turkey’s anti-terror operation in northern Syria last month, the terrorist YPG/PKK, using mortars fired across the border in Syria, has martyred 17 civilians in southern Turkey – including a woman, two children, and one infant -- and injured 36.
Turkey on Oct. 9 launched Operation Peace Spring to eliminate terrorists from northern Syria east of the Euphrates River in order to secure Turkey’s borders, aid in the safe return of Syrian refugees, and ensure Syria’s territorial integrity.
In its more than 30-year terror campaign against Turkey, the PKK -- listed as a terrorist organization by Turkey, the U.S. and the European Union -- has been responsible for deaths of 40,000 people, including women, children and infants. The YPG is the PKK’s Syrian offshoot.
* Writing by Ali Murat Alhas