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Turkey says warplanes hit Kurdish rebels in northern Iraq

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ISTANBUL, Turkey — Turkish warplanes hit an area in northern Iraq where a group of Kurdish rebels was trying to infiltrate Turkey, the military said Wednesday.

The aircraft attacked the rebels in the Avasin-Basyan region of northern Iraq, near the Turkish border town of Cukurca, the Turkish military said.

The military said the rebel group was "rendered ineffective," a euphemism generally used to refer to killed rebels. But in Wednesday's statement, it was unclear if there were any casualties.

The military also reported clashes in Turkey's Diyarbakir and Sirnak provinces and said one rebel was killed.

In response to the Turkish military report, the rebel group commented on what appeared to be a different bombing.

"Turkish airplanes bombed today some areas in the Zagros mountains in the Iraq-Iranian-Turkey triangle," rebels spokesman Ahmed Denis said, adding that no casualties or damage had been reported.

In February, the Turkish military staged a ground incursion against Kurdish rebels in Iraq, and it has periodically bombed and shelled suspected rebel positions across the border in past months.

The United States lists the rebel Kurdistan Workers' Party as a terrorist group and is sharing military intelligence about the rebels with Turkey.

Kurdish guerrillas seek autonomy for Kurds in southeast Turkey and have been fighting since 1984.