Eight police officers have been killed, and at least 45 people have been injured by a car bomb attack carried out by PKK terrorists in Cizre district in Turkey’s southeastern Şırnak province near the Syrian border early Friday.
The terrorist attack took place at 6:40 am local time, and was carried out with a truck filled with explosives, reports said.
According to Şırnak Governorate, two of the 45 people who have been injured in the attack are in critical condition.
The Şırnak-Cizre road was closed to traffic following the terrorist attack, and many houses and shops were damaged as a result of the explosion.
Ambulances and health officials rushed to the scene of the attack, and the injured have been brought to Cizre public hospital to receive treatment.
Security forces have launched an operation to catch the terrorists.
On Thursday, PKK terrorists attacked the convoy of Turkey’s main opposition Republican People’s Party (CHP) chairman Kemal Kılıçdaroğlu, killing a soldier guarding the motorcade and injuring two others.
The Turkish government has intensified its counterterror operations following the recent attacks carried out by the PKK, which is recognized as a terrorist organization by the U.S., the EU and Turkey.
Formed in 1978, the terrorist group has been fighting the Turkish government for an independent state until the early 2000’s.
The Associated Press
Kurdish militants on Friday attacked a police checkpoint in southeast Turkey with an explosives-laden truck, killing at least eight police officers and wounding 45 other people, the state-run news agency reported.
The attack struck the checkpoint some 50 meters (yards) from a main police station near the town of Cizre, in the mainly-Kurdish Sirnak province that borders Syria, the Anadolu Agency reported.
There was no immediate claim of responsibility for the attack which was the latest in a string of bombings that have targeted police or military vehicles and installations. Authorities have blamed the Kurdistan Workers’ Party, or PKK, for those attacks.
Television footage showed black smoke rising from the mangled truck. The three-story police station was gutted from the powerful explosion.
At least two of the wounded were in critical condition, an official said. The Health Ministry said it had sent 12 ambulances and two helicopters to the site.
Violence between the PKK and the security forces resumed last year, after a fragile two-year peace process between the government and militant group collapsed. Hundreds of security force members have been killed since.
Turkey has also seen a rise of deadly attacks that have been blamed on Islamic State militants, including a suicide bombing at a Kurdish wedding in southeast Turkey last week that killed 54 people and an attack on Istanbul’s main airport in June, which killed 44.
Turkey sent tanks across the Syrian border this week to help Syrian rebels retake a key IS-held town.
Since hostilities with the PKK resumed last summer, more than 600 Turkish security personnel and thousands of PKK militants have been killed, according to the Anadolu Agency. Human rights groups say hundreds of civilians have also been killed.
The PKK is considered a terror organization by Turkey and its allies.
The attacks on police come as the country is still reeling from a violent coup attempt on July 15 that killed at least 270 people. The government has blamed the failed coup on the supporters of U.S.-based Muslim cleric Fethullah Gulen and has embarked on a sweeping crackdown on his followers.
Tags: car bomb, CHP, Erdogan, Explosion killed at least eight police officers and wounded 45 other people, explosives, Fethullah Gülen, Istanbul's main airport, Kemal Kilicdaroglu, Kurdish, Kurdish militants, Kurdistan Workers' Party, PKK, PKK terrorists, Republican People's Party, Syria, Turkey, Turkey's border with Syria