Turkish police forces arrested two militants belonging to the outlawed PKK in the act as they kidnapped a girl in Turkey’s southeastern province of Bitlis.
According to a statement released by the Governorate of Bitlis, security forces have heightened security measures in the face of escalating cases of kidnapping by the PKK and the umbrella organisation the Kurdistan Communities Union (KCK) in order to recruit youth and children into their militia on the mountains.
The PKK is recognised as a terrorist organisation by Turkey as well as NATO and the EU. The conflict between the Turkish government and the PKK has so far claimed the lives of more than 40,000 people and injured thousands.
The attempted kidnapping was noticed after police stopped a vehicle in Tatvan district of Bitlis province and a girl inside the car, a high school student, told police that she was being taken to a PKK camp in a rural area.
The two men in the car were detained immediately and were charged on counts of “being a member of a terrorist organisation, recruiting members and victimising an underage person while violating her independence.”
On Sunday, five men, four workers and a contractor were released over the weekend after being kidnapped by the PKK on May 28 in Turkey’s eastern province of Tunceli.
As the June 7 general elections in Turkey draw closer, the PKK has been accused of escalating attacks in Turkey’s eastern provinces in order to influence the vote.