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Turkey destroys church in bombing of Christian village in Iraqi Kurdistan

TURKISH forces destroyed a church and several buildings in a bombing raid on a Christian village in Iraq’s semi-autonomous Kurdistan region, officials confirmed today.

The village of Miska in the Amedi district of Duhok province was the latest target of Turkish air strikes, which also damaged other buildings and destroyed trees.

One villager said that most of the inhabitants had been forced to flee and that the “people were terrified.” 

At least three villages have now been abandoned due to the incessant bombing, with the last four families leaving Edine on Tuesday.

Turkey’s bombardments have also badly damaged at least 610 acres of land and green space in Duhok province so far this year, government officials have reported. 

More than 152,000 acres of forest have been burnt in Iraqi Kurdistan Region in the past 10 years, with at least 35 per cent of the destruction due to aerial bombing by the Turkish and Iranian militaries, according to the authorities.

Turkey’s illegal invasion of Iraqi Kurdistan began on April 23 and has met with fierce resistance from guerilla fighters, who have insisted that President Recep Tayyip Erdogan “cannot win” this war and have vowed to “crush the invading army.”

At least eight Turkish soldiers have been killed in the latest Kurdistan Workers Party (PKK) offensive against the occupying forces since it began last week.

Kurdish leaders have appealed to the international community to speak out against Turkey’s military action, which the Kurdistan Communities Union (KCK) insists is part of an imperialist war backed by Nato, the United States and the European Union.

KCK spokesman Zagros Hiwa told the Morning Star that Turkey has been bombing the region since 1992, killing “thousands of civilians and Kurdistan freedom fighters.”

He said the PKK guerillas are defending the Kurdish people’s freedom and “have the legitimate right to defend themselves and their peoples against such brutal attacks.”

Mr Hiwa explained that recent drone strikes on three military bases and airfields inside Turkey were aimed at “nipping the bombardments in the bud,” having closed the military airport in Diyarbakir for one month.

The use of drone technology by the PKK, a development that it calls Democratic Modernity Guerilla, “shows the collective creativity, adaptability and flexibility of its units and has added a new dimension to guerilla warfare – airspace,” Mr Hiwa explained.

PKK sources said that seven Turkish soldiers were killed in guerilla operations in Metina on Tuesday night.

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