Blast hits Turkish gendarmerie post in southeast

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Baku, October 9 AZERTAC

An explosives-laden vehicle was detonated outside a gendarmerie station in southeast Turkey on Sunday, killing 18 people.

According to Anadolu Agency, following the attack at around 9.45 a.m. local time (06.45GMT) in Semdinli, Hakkari province, Prime Minister Binali Yildirim said eight civilians died and 10 soldiers were martyred.

“A pick-up made a suicide rush with 5 tonnes of explosives in it,” he said at a news conference in Istanbul.

In a statement, the Turkish General Staff blamed the attack on the PKK terrorist organization. Hakkari province, which borders Iraq and Iran, has seen a large number of PKK attacks since the group resumed its armed campaign in July last year.

The military said 16 gendarmes were wounded. The number of civilians injured was unclear but a group of people waiting at a nearby bus stop are thought to have been caught in the attack.

The blast occurred at a checkpoint in front of Durak gendarmerie outpost, which is around 20 kilometers (12 miles) north of Semdinli town center.

The casualties were taken to nearby hospitals and an air and land operation was launched to hunt the terrorists.

The PKK is listed as a terrorist organization by Turkey, the U.S., and EU. Since it resumed its decades-old armed campaign, PKK terror attacks martyred more than 600 security personnel and claimed lives of many civilians including women and children while around 7,000 terrorists were killed in army operations.

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