Ankara explosion: Turkey blames Kurds, retaliates with airstrikes

After two explosions ripped through the country killing 34 people, their warplanes bombed Kurdish militant camps 

Ankara: Turkish warplanes yesterday bombed Kurdish militant camps in northern Iraq as an explosion hit a second military convoy in southeast Turkey.

Smoke rises above after the Ankara explosion on Wednesday. Pic/AFP
Smoke rises above after the Ankara explosion on Wednesday. Pic/AFP

Six people were said to have been killed in yesterday’s attack near Diyarbakir, a day after a car bomb was detonated near a military headquarters in the Turkish capital Ankara, killing 28 people and injuring 61 others.

Turkey yesterday blamed Kurdish militants for the bombings. Prime Minister Ahmet Davutoglu said the Ankara attack was carried out by operatives of the outlawed Kurdistan Workers’ Party (PKK) in cooperation with the Syrian Kurdish People’s Protection Units (YPG).

“It has with certainty been revealed that this attack was carried out by members of the terrorist organisation in Turkey in cooperation with a YPG member who infiltrated from Syria,” Davutoglu said.

“The attack has direct links with YPG.”

He said the bomber was a Syrian national named Salih Necar and that nine people had been detained over the attack. Davutoglu vowed to make the culprits “pay a price,” saying Turkey would take any kind of measure on its border including self-defence.

Hours after the attack, Turkey’s air force launched new strikes on PKK targets in northern Iraq, acting on intelligence that there were dozens of fighters including top rebel leaders in the area, the army said.

Davutoglu said 70 fighters had been killed in the strikes. Turkey considers both the PKK and YPG to be terror groups, in contrast to the US which only classifies the PKK as a terror organisation and works closely with the YPG as an effective force fighting jihadists in

Syria. Police identified the bomber from fingerprints taken from refugees who crossed the border to escape the war in Syria.

PYD denies responsibility
The head of the Syrian Kurdish Democratic Union Party yesterday denied Turkish allegations that the group was involved in a bombing in Ankara that killed 28 people. “We deny any involvement in this attack,” Saleh Muslim said. “These accusations are clearly related to Turkish attempts to intervene in Syria.”

 

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