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Last Updated: Thursday, 7 June 2007, 11:33 GMT 12:33 UK
Turkey tightens control near Iraq
Turkish soldiers on military exercise in Cizre, near Iraq
Turkish troops have been on exercises in Cizre, near Iraq
Turkey says it is establishing "temporary security zones" near its border with Iraq, where it has already deployed extra forces.

An official military statement gave the area's coordinates, corresponding to parts of Hakkari, Siirt and Sirnak provinces, in the south-east.

Turkish media say civilian flights will be banned from those areas.

Turkey has denied a report that it has sent hundreds of troops into northern Iraq to root out Kurdish rebels.

The Associated Press report, quoting Turkish security officials and an Iraqi Kurdish official, said Turkish troops had carried out a cross-border "hot pursuit" raid on Wednesday.

Turkish Prime Minister Recep Tayyip Erdogan reiterated on Wednesday that parliament's approval would be required for such an operation.

PKK bases

Turkey has repeatedly complained that Kurdish separatist rebels use bases in northern Iraq to launch attacks on Turkey.

Turkey has blamed the banned Kurdistan Workers Party (PKK) for recent attacks, including a raid on a Turkish military outpost in Tunceli province on Monday, which killed seven Turkish paramilitaries.

The PKK has been fighting for an ethnic homeland since 1984. Turkey blames the group for 30,000 deaths since then.

In the past Turkish forces have launched some cross-border raids to flush out PKK rebels.

Turkey has urged US and Iraqi forces to crack down on the PKK bases in northern Iraq.

Turkish officials are preparing to deliver a report to the UN calling for more co-operation against the PKK, a group the US and EU brand as terrorists.


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