Turkish police targeted in deadly car bombing
Turkish security sources say at least four people have been killed after a powerful car bomb attack hit a police station in the southeastern province of Mardin on Wednesday.
The attack, a day after 11 people were killed in a bombing in Istanbul, targeted the police station in the town of Midyat, north of the Syrian border in the mainly Kurdish region.
The explosion left four people, including a pregnant policewoman, dead and several others wounded, according to the Dogan news agency.
Images carried by Turkish media showed a massive plume of black smoke rising from the rubble of the severely-damaged police station.
The windows of houses in the neighborhood were shattered by the force of the blast and ambulances and fire engines were dispatched to the scene.
State-run Anatolia news agency blamed “terrorists” in a reference to militants from the outlawed Kurdistan Workers’ Party (PKK).
Tuesday’s attack was the fourth on Istanbul this year, dealing another blow to the tourism industry.
Turkey is battling PKK militants, who have killed hundreds of members of the security forces in the southeast.
The army has been waging an intense offensive, with so-called “clean-up” operations in several towns in the southeast.
Activists have accused the security forces of causing huge destruction to urban centers and killing civilians.
The government however says the operations are essential for public safety, blaming the PKK for the damage.
Over 40,000 people have been killed since the PKK took up arms in 1984 demanding an independent state.
Turkey, a member of NATO and the US-led coalition, has also stepped up its operations in northern Syria.
The country is worried by the advances of Kurdish forces who are supported by the US.
Last month, Ankara furiously protested to the US after American special operations troops appeared wearing the patches of Kurdish forces in Syria.
Turkish Foreign Minister Mevlut Cavusoglu said the US is “two-faced” for refusing to call the Syrian Kurdish militia terrorists, reflecting Ankara’s growing irritation at Washington’s backing of the group.