Tags: Turks | Plan | Troop | Incursion | into | Iraq

Turks Plan Troop Incursion into Iraq

Sunday, 24 November 2002 12:00 AM

The 60–mile incursion, described in a plan making the rounds among top Turkish officials, however, is seen by some analysts as a screen to the real purpose of the military evolution: to prevent the establishment of an independent Kurdish state during the uproar of war.

Turkey, which is battling its own Kurdish insurgency, does not want an independent Kurdish state on its border, and its apprehensions are seen as but part of the region’s general case of nerves as leaders fear the war’s perhaps unintentional effects.

Although supporting the American effort to oust Saddam Hussein, the Turks also picture a scenario in which Iraq's Kurds, fired by Hussein's defeat, rise up. In 1991, the revolting Kurds were savaged by Hussein’s loyal forces and wound up perishing on the borders at the rate of thousands per day.

According to the Times, the incursion and refugee control plan calls for the establishment of 18 camps, 12 of them in Iraq, designed to hold about 275,000 refugees.

The camps in Iraq would be filled first, and foreigners trying to enter Turkey before the first 12 camps were filled would be turned back. Meanwhile, camps in Turkey would be made available only after the ones in Iraq were occupied to capacity.

The plan as outlined in the documents says, "The main principle will be to send foreigners settled in the camps either back to their region of origin or to third countries."

Meanwhile, human rights workers in Turkey fear the worst.

"The Turkish Army would do its best to eliminate the possibility of a Kurdish entity in northern Iraq, through military means," Selahattin Demitas, of the Turkish Human Rights Association told the Times. "The only law that will be applied in that area would be the law of war."

Others criticize the plan because it is inconsistent with the general principle under international law that countries are obliged to grant entrance to people fleeing persecution from other countries.

However, Turkish leaders say their country is already engaged in a heated war against illegal immigrants from Asia. In the first 10 months of this year, for example, more than 13,000 people were detained trying to cross into Turkey from Iraq.

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The 60-mile incursion, described in a plan making the rounds among top Turkish officials, however, is seen by some analysts as a screen to the real purpose of the military evolution: to prevent the establishment of an independent Kurdish state during the uproar of...
Turks,Plan,Troop,Incursion,into,Iraq
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2002-00-24
Sunday, 24 November 2002 12:00 AM
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