Turkish PM vows to heal wounds of terror-hit SE district
Turkish Prime Minister Ahmet Davutoglu has pledged immediate compensation for the people of Silopi district in southeastern Turkey's Sirnak province, which was the scene of heavy clashes between security forces and PKK terrorists until recently, Anadolu agency reported.
Addressing the media in Silopi district Friday, Davutoglu said the government was making all efforts to heal wounds in the district.
"All our ministries are in a serious effort to rapidly compensate the destruction that occurred. Damaged buildings have been identified; damage assessment efforts completed and a huge reconstruction activity will start in Silopi as of tomorrow [Saturday]," the prime minister said.
Public order was restored in Silopi following a weeks-long curfew and counter-terrorism operations carried out against the terrorist PKK group, Sirnak governor announced on Jan. 19.
A total of 136 PKK terrorists were killed in Silopi since counter-terror operations began in Dec. 15, a day after curfew was imposed, Turkish military said Jan. 18.
Davutoglu said residents of buildings with little damage would be paid to carry out repairs at their homes, while critically-damaged buildings would be included in urban transformation projects.
He added that roads and infrastructure of the district would also be renewed. "The damages in road and sewage infrastructure will swiftly be solved, all roads will be rehabilitated and all infrastructure deficiencies will be completed," he added.
The premier also vowed to grant credit to Silopi residents in efforts to revive the economic life in the district.
Davutoglu said the government was not just including terror-hit buildings in its effort, but also poorly-constructed buildings would also be renewed as part of the compensation.
He noted that the Family and Social Policies Minister, Sema Ramazanoglu, and the Environment and Urbanization Minister Fatma Guldemet Sari were already carrying out activities for the recovery of Silopi.
Davutoglu arrived in Silopi at 11.00 a.m. local time (0900GMT) via his private plane on an unannounced visit to learn more about the recently-concluded anti-terrorism operations in the district.
Sirnak Governor Ali Ihsan Su and other local officials had welcomed the prime minister at Sirnak's Serafettin Elci Airport.
Also, Davutoglu said his Friday prayers at the Silopi Carsi Mosque.
The PKK -- listed as a terrorist organization also by the U.S., and the EU -- resumed its 30-year armed campaign last July. Since then, more than 280 members of the security forces have been martyred and thousands of PKK terrorists killed, according to officials.