ANKARA

Turkish security forces “neutralized” at least three terrorists in an air-backed operation in eastern Turkey, the Interior Ministry said Saturday.

The terrorists were neutralized as part of Operation Yildirim-3 in rural areas of the Dogubayazit district in Agri province, it said in a statement.

The number of terrorists neutralized as part of Yildirim operations rose to six Saturday with three in Diyarbakir after three more PKK terrorists were neutralized earlier in the day.

Turkish authorities often use “neutralized” to imply the terrorists in question surrendered or were killed or captured.

The terrorists’ affiliation was not mentioned, but the PKK terror group is active in the region.

This summer, Turkey launched a series of security operations to neutralize terrorists believed to be hiding in the country’s east and southeast.

In its more than 30-year terror campaign against Turkey, the PKK — listed as a terrorist organization by Turkey, the US and the European Union — has been responsible for the deaths of nearly 40,000 people, including women, children and infants.

The YPG is the PKK’s branch in Syria, just across Turkey’s southern border.

*Writing by Burak Dag

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