Law passed to restore historic SE Turkish district
The Turkish parliament late Thursday passed a bill to restore the southeastern district of Sur, Diyarbakir, bringing leaders’ pledges to restore the area closer to fulfillment.

Large urban areas such as Sur and Cizre in the Sirnak province suffered severe damage in months of fighting with the terrorist PKK, which has widely used explosives to ambush security forces.

Sur, parts of which are a UNESCO World Heritage site, was particularly badly hit.

Turkish Prime Minister Ahmet Davutoglu said earlier this month that the Sur district will be restored and Diyarbakir's stalled economy reinvigorated after the anti-terror operations.

"Under all circumstances, the fight against terrorism will be conducted determinedly and we will not stop until each street of Diyarbakir and every home in Sur finds peace and security," Davutoglu said.

"Unfortunately, 26 hotels were closed due to these incidents, and many shopkeepers had to close their shops. We ourselves will be supportive of re-opening of all these one by one," he added.

On Monday, Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan reiterated the government’s determination to rebuild areas of the country’s southeast where anti-terror operations ended to clear the region of PKK terrorists.

The operation in Sur, Diyarbakir province’s historic quarter, came to an end on March 9.

The operation saw the district sealed off since December as security forces fought PKK terrorists, removed ditches and barricades, and defused booby-traps.

Sur was one of a series of towns and neighborhoods where Turkish security forces conducted anti-terror operations to root out the PKK terrorist group, which renewed its armed campaign against Turkey last July.

A series of counter-terrorism operations were launched across southeast Turkey in December to oust terrorism from a number of urban areas, following the PKK’s resumption of attacks in July that ended a two-year "resolution process” to end the 30-year conflict that has claimed the lives of more than 40,000 people.

Since summer, more than 350 members of the Turkish security forces have been martyred in clashes with the PKK – listed as a terrorist organization by Turkey, the U.S., and EU. Thousands of terrorists have been killed.

Last Modified: 2016-04-15 11:46:46
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