Turkish soldiers patrol a road near Çukurca in the Hakkari province, southeastern Turkey. File photo
- Mosul: ISIS executes six young men on charges of spying for coalition
- After suffering heavy losses, ISIS using old battle footages to stimulate militants to continue fighting
- Hezbollah’s leader agrees with Donald Trump: Obama is the “founder” of ISIS
- ISIS jihadis throw Iraqi man off a roof for being gay
- Senior jihadi leader killed in joint US-Kurdish special operation
- Islamic State chief in Afghanistan, Pakistan killed in US strike
- Turkey, Iran pledge cooperation over Syria
Several Turkish soldiers were killed on Sunday in a major attack in southeastern Hakkari province suspected to have been carried out by Kurdistan Workers Party (PKK) militants, reports said.
There was no immediate official casualty toll but in a sign of the gravity of the situation Prime Minister Ahmet Davutoglu broke off a trip to Konya to watch a national football game and summoned an emergency security meeting in Ankara, the reports added.
NTV television said militants staged a mine attack on two military vehicles in a convoy in the Daglica district of Hakkari, a known PKK stronghold.
It added that Turkish F-4 and F-16 warplanes carried out strikes in retaliation against those suspected to have carried out the attack.
President Recep Tayyip Erdogan reacted to the attack during a live television interview but also did not give any casualty figures.
“A mine attack has been staged. There will be a very particular and decisive fight there. We are very sad,” he told the A-Haber channel.
“The weather conditions were unfavorable. A struggle was being waged under such conditions,” he said, adding the attack happened during a “clean-up operation” against PKK militants.
The PKK has been staging daily attacks against the Turkish armed forces as the military presses an over month-long operation against the group in southeast Turkey and northern Iraq.
The violence has left in tatters a 2013 ceasefire aimed at assisting the search for a final peace deal to end the PKK’s three-decade insurgency that has claimed tens of thousands of lives.