Car bomb­ing kills at least 18

Daily Local News (West Chester, PA) - - NEWS -

ISTANBUL >> Kur­dish mil­i­tants det­o­nated a car bomb Sun­day out­side a mil­i­tary check­point in south­east Turkey, killing 10 sol­diers and eight civil­ians, the prime min­is­ter said. Turkey im­me­di­ately launched a mil­i­tary op­er­a­tion against the rebels in re­sponse.

Prime Min­is­ter Bi­nali Yildirim gave the death toll dur­ing a press con­fer­ence in Istanbul and con­demned the at­tack.

“For the sta­bil­ity of our coun­try, we will con­tinue do­ing ev­ery­thing we can to save our home­land and our na­tion from the forces of ter­ror­ism,” he said.

Cuneyit Orhan To­prak, gov­er­nor of Hakkari prov­ince where the at­tack took place, told that pri­vate news chan­nel NTV that 27 oth­ers wounded in the at­tack were rushed to nearby hos­pi­tals for treat­ment. Eleven of them were sol­diers, the Turk­ish mil­i­tary said.

Turkey’s state-run Anadolu Agency, cit­ing a state­ment by the Turk­ish Armed Forces, said the at­tack oc­curred at 9:45 a.m. out­side a Gen­darmerie check­point on the Semdinli-Yuk­sekova high­way and was the work of the Kur­dis­tan Work­ers’ Party, or PKK. The check­point is 12 mile) from the town of Semdinli.

To­prak said the at­tack­ers first opened fire on the sol­diers at the check­point to dis­tract them be­fore driv­ing up a mini­van con­tain­ing about 5 tons of ex­plo­sives and det­o­nat­ing it. The ex­plo­sion pro­duced a crater 50 feet wide and 23 feet deep. An in­fantry sta­tion lo­cated be­hind the check­point also suf­fered heavy dam­age.

Turk­ish au­thor­i­ties im­posed a tem­po­rary black­out on cov­er­age of the at­tack, cit­ing pub­lic or­der and na­tional se­cu­rity rea­sons.

En­ergy Min­is­ter Berat Al­bayrak con­demned the at­tack dur­ing a speech in Istanbul.

“I would like to re­mind all friendly coun­tries that there is great need to take a com­mon stance and dis­play sol­i­dar­ity against ter­ror­ism,” he said.

White House Na­tional Se­cu­rity Coun­cil spokesper­son Ned Price con­demned the at­tack on the mil­i­tary check­point, call­ing it “just the lat­est in a deeply con­cern­ing trend of in­creas­ing vi­o­lence by the PKK.”

“We re­main stead­fast in our sup­port for our NATO ally, Turkey, and reaf­firm our com­mit­ment to con­tinue work­ing to­gether to de­feat all forms of ter­ror­ism,” Price said.

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