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Middle East france 24

Turkey blames Kurdish groups for deadly Ankara bombing

© Adem Altan, AFP | Turkish forensic experts inspect the explosion scene in Ankara on February 18, 2016

Text by FRANCE 24

Latest update : 2016-02-18

Turkish Prime Minister Ahmet Davutoglu said Thursday that the perpetrator of the Ankara car bombing that killed 28 people is a member of the Syrian Kurdish YPG militia, working with insurgents from the outlawed Kurdistan Workers Party (PKK).

In a live televised speech, Davutoglu said the bombing showed that the Syrian Kurdish YPG is a terrorist organisation and that Turkey would retaliate.

In an apparent reference to the United States, he added that Turkey expects cooperation from its allies against the group. But Washington has worked closely with the Kurdish YPG in the fight against the Islamic State group in Syria. Ankara regards both the YPG and the outlawed Kurdistan Workers Party (PKK) as terrorist organisations; the US also lists the PKK as a terrorist group.

“It has been revealed that this attack was carried out by members of the PKK terrorist organisation in cooperation with a YPG member who infiltrated [Turkey] from Syria," Davutoglu told reporters in Ankara, confirming the bomber was a Syrian national named Salih Necar and adding that nine people had been detained following the attack.

Video: A rare look inside the Kurdish rebel movement

However, the head of the Syrian Kurdish Democratic Union Party on Thursday denied that the group's armed wing was involved in the deadly bombing.

Violence continues

Davutoglu also said that senior members of the PKK had been killed in air strikes on their camps in northern Iraq launched overnight.

In all, between 60 and 70 Kurdish fighters were killed overnight in the air raids, according to the Turkish prime minister.

Meanwhile, a bomb detonated by remote control killed seven Turkish security force members travelling in a military vehicle in southeast Turkey on Thursday, security sources said, a day after the car bomb attack in Ankara.

In a statement French President François Hollande called the bombing in Ankara an “odious attack” and expressed “support and solidarity with the Turkish authorities and the Turkish people”.

(FRANCE 24 with REUTERS)

 

Date created : 2016-02-18

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