11 dead as bomb destroys Turkish police building in Cizre

#TurkeyAtWar

At least nine people killed and dozens more injured in border town attack blamed on PKK militants

Much of the centre of Cizre was reduced to rubble during heavy fighting earlier this year (AFP)
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Last update: 
Friday 26 August 2016 11:07 UTC
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A car bomb blamed on Kurdistan Workers' Party (PKK) rebels on Friday exploded outside a police headquarters in Turkey's southeastern town of Cizre, killing at least 11 people according to security sources.

The bomb attack, which struck a checkpoint about 50 metres from the building, caused immense damage to the headquarters of the special anti-riot police force in Cizre, with television pictures showing an immense plume of black smoke heading into the sky.

Turkish Prime Minister Binali Yildirim said in a press conference that at least 11 people had been killed and 70 others injured.

"We will give those vile (attackers) the answer they deserve," he told the news conference in Istanbul. "No terrorist organisation can hold Turkey captive."

"Our people should understand and know that we have waged a collective war on terrorist groups."

Cizre is on the border between Turkey and Syria, where Turkish soldiers have clashed with Kurdish fighters since crossing the border to also confront the Islamic State (IS) group earlier this week.

The attack follows an attack last week on a police headquarters in the eastern city of Elazig, also blamed on the PKK, which killed at least six people and injured 140 others.

Cizre was besieged by Turkish security forces earlier this year after Kurdish militants mostly affiliated with the Patriotic Revolutionary Youth Movement (YDG-H) - often referred to as the "youth wing" of the PKK - declared autonomy and began erecting roadblocks and digging trenches.

Most of the town's 120,000 residents subsequently fled, but Kurdish activists said that some civilians trapped in besieged neighbourhoods had been killed in heavy fighting during which many buildings were reduced to rubble.

Hundreds of members of the Turkish security services have been killed in attacks since the collapse of a two-year ceasefire between the PKK and the Turkish state in July last year.