DIYARBAKIR, (AFP) – Separatist Kurdish rebels attacked a Turkish military unit near the Iraqi border, killing six soldiers, military sources said Tuesday.
The Kurdistan Workers’ Party (PKK) militants mounted the attack overnight, near the border town of Cukurca, targeting a military unit which had been stationed there as reinforcement after a significant escalation of rebel violence since June, the sources said.
Six soldiers were killed and several wounded in the ensuing clashes, they said.
There was no immediate word about any PKK casualties.
An operation to pursue the assailants was continuing in the area Tuesday after the army deployed reinforcements, backed by air cover, they added.
The PKK dramatically stepped up violence after its jailed leader Abdullah Ocalan said through his lawyers in late May he was abandoning efforts to seek dialogue with Ankara.
The PKK, listed as a terrorist group by Turkey and much of the international community, took up arms for self-rule in the Kurdish-majority southeast in 1984, sparking a conflict that has claimed some 45,000 lives.