In historic deal with Turkey, Syria pledges amnesty, jobs for ex-PKK members
Prime Minister Recep Tayyip Erdogan and Syrian Prime Minister Muhammad Naji al-Otri, during his visit to Turkey earlier this week, signed a historic deal dealing with how members of the terrorist PKK in northern Iraq will be treated. Under the agreement, PKK terrorists and leaders in northern Iraq will be encouraged to settle in Syria, which is planning a general amnesty for PKK militants. Syria is also promising an employment scheme for those who want to come back from northern Iraq and reintegrate into Syrian society. If these militants can be relocated to and kept in Syria, this would ease Turkey's anti-terrorist task tremendously, said a senior security official who asked not to be named. The deal also marks a historic point in relations between the two countries. Syria was the PKK's number one supporter in the region until 1998, when Turkey threatened war. In recent years, Syria and Turkey have declared the PKK a common enemy.