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Last Updated: Saturday, 6 May 2006, 10:01 GMT 11:01 UK
Turkish press applauds anti-Kurd moves
Turkish press graphic

Commentators in the Turkish press are quick to speculate about the timing of Iranian artillery shelling on Kurdish opposition camps in northern Iraq.

Some view the moves as an attempt to win over Turkish public opinion at a time of growing tensions betwen Tehran and Washington over Iran's nuclear ambitions.

Others see the outlines of a new common security policy emerging in the region.

Commentary by Sami Kohen in MILLIYET

Iran's actions against the PKK [Kurdish Worker's Party] are a well-calculated manoeuvre... The Tehran administration has, of course, launched this broad operation against the Kurdish activists with its own security in mind... However, Tehran's attacks... also have other motives: the first to come to mind is Iran's wish to pull Turkey onto its side in the crisis over Iran's nuclear programme. In other words, by acting against the PKK and its supporters, Iran hopes to gain the sympathy and support of the Turkish public.

Commentary by Mehmet Ali Birand in POSTA

In order to keep Ankara close and to appease the Turkish public, Iran is bombing the PKK camps. It is conveying the message: 'Look we are doing what the US cannot do'. It is showing all of us that, on the Kurdish issue, there must be solidarity with Turkey.

Commentary by M. Ali Kislali in RADIKAL

Iran is doing what Turkey cannot do against the PKK... Turkey needs Iran on the PKK issue. And Iran needs Turkey not to allow the use of its bases when the threat created by the US is at issue...

Commentary by Ibrahim Karagul in YENI SAFAK

Iran is carrying out operations against the PKK entity in northern Iraq, co-ordinating with Turkey. While Turkey, which has accumulated troops at the Iraqi border, is also carrying out limited operations in northern Iraq, Iran is making missile strikes against Kandil Mountain in northern Iraq. Security co-operation between the two countries is continuing very healthily.

Commentary by Orhan Birgit in CUMHURIYET

A decisive fight is being carried out by the Turkish armed forces on the border with northern Iraq, where the power vacuum persists. At the same time, news was coming in that a considerable action was being carried out by Iran against the PKK threat... Thus in two separate countries, a notional common security policy action has been coming into being.

Commentary by Mehmet Ali Birand in POSTA

The Turkish armed forces will stay along the border in the short and medium term... Apparently, Ankara has got the necessary signal from Washington and reached a consensus with Baghdad.

Commentary by Fikret Bila in MILLIYET

By increasing its military presence at the border, Turkey is taking action against the results of the security vacuum there. It has no secondary aim of looking for an excuse for a cross-border operation or increasing its presence in northern Iraq.

Commentary by Ferai Tinc in HURRIYET

The Kirkuk issue is a subject that is being followed with concern not only by Turkey but also by the whole region... it is understood that a new equation is being formed between Turkey and the US about Kirkuk's status and an alliance against Iran.

Commentary by M. Ali Kislali in RADIKAL

It is known that we have a considerable force in northern Iraq that can at least deal with significant developments there. If authorized officials in Turkey so decide, this makes it inevitable that this force will carry out covert operations in places where the PKK is based.

BBC Monitoring selects and translates news from radio, television, press, news agencies and the internet from 150 countries in more than 70 languages. It is based in Caversham, UK, and has several bureaux abroad.

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