ANKARA (Reuters) - Thousands of Turkish troops have crossed into northern Iraq with thousands more at the border ready to join them in their hunt for Kurdish PKK guerrillas, a senior military source said on Friday.
Turkey's military said the land offensive would be supported by fighter jets and Turkish television reported that 10,000 troops had entered Iraq.
"The Turkish Armed Forces, which attach great importance to Iraq's territorial integrity and stability, will return home in the shortest time possible after its goals have been achieved," the General Staff said in a statement posted on its Web site.
The military source based in southeast Turkey told Reuters: "Thousands of troops have crossed the border and thousands more are waiting at the border to join them if necessary."
The U.S. military said it was aware that Turkish forces had launched an offensive into northern Iraq against members of the Kurdistan Workers Party (PKK), considered a terrorist group by Ankara, the United States and the European Union.