Kidnapped customs officers arrive in Turkey’s capital Ankara

Total of 20 customs officers who were kidnapped by PKK terrorists arrive in Turkey’s capital Ankara after militant group released them

Photo by: AA
Photo by: AA

Customs officers welcomed by their families at Esenboga Airport in Ankara

A total of 20 customs officers who were kidnapped by PKK terrorists at the end of August arrived in Turkey’s capital Ankara after they were released on Tuesday.

The customs officials were kidnapped by PKK terrorists in Turkey's eastern Van and southeastern Hakkari provinces.

Released by the militant group, the customs officers were handed to the NGO Human Rights Association (IHD), Sirnak bar association, and a committee from People's Democratic Party (HDP) in northern Iraq.

Speaking to the reporters, the head of the Turkish Human Rights Association Ozturk Turkdogan said that "twenty customs officials were released near the northern Iraqi city of Dohuk.”

Silopi local Governor Savas Konak welcomed the customs officials, including one driver, at the Habur border gate, following their arrival in Turkey.

The customs officials went through a medical examination and later talked with their families over the phone.

On August 10, a total of 10 customs officers working at the Uzumlu border crossing between Turkey and Iraq  - in Turkey's southeastern Hakkari province - were kidnapped by PKK terrorists while they were on their way to work.

Following this incident, 11 more customs officers and one bus driver were also taken, as they were returning home from work on August 21.

Later, the PKK released one out of the 11 customs officials and a minibus driver on August 25 in Turkey's southeastern Van province.

The PKK which is listed as a terrorist organisation by Turkey, NATO, the US, and EU, has been carrying out terror attacks mostly in southeast Turkey, since the early 1980s.


TRTWorld, AA