ANKARA – Agence France-Presse
Turkish police Tuesday detained 20 people in simultaneous operations across four provinces targeting an urban group accused of collaborating with armed Kurdish militants, Anatolia news agency reported.
Anti-terror police rounded up the suspects in dawn raids on 22 locations in the southern provinces of Mersin, Gaziantep and Hatay and the eastern province of Adıyaman, the report said.
They were all brought to Gaziantep city for questioning, it said.
About 30 people, among them Kurdish mayors, were detained in similar raids last month.
The operations target an underground Kurdish group that is known as the urban arm of the Kurdistan Workers Party, or PKK, and is accused of organizing pro-PKK protests and street violence in the Southeast.
The PKK, listed as a terrorist group by Turkey and much of the international community, took up arms against Ankara in 1984, sparking a conflict that has claimed about 45,000 lives.
In August, the government announced plans to expand Kurdish freedoms in a bid to erode popular support for the PKK and end the conflict.
But the initiative took a serious blow last month when seven soldiers were killed in a PKK ambush and the Constitutional Court outlawed Turkey's main Kurdish party for links to the PKK, sparking deadly Kurdish protests and street violence.