Kurdish rebels keep up attacks on Turkish military

Kurdish rebels kept up their attacks on Turkey`s military overnight killing one soldier and wounding another in the country`s east, bringing this weekend`s death toll to 12 soldiers, a news agency reported on Sunday.

Updated: Jun 20, 2010, 13:47 PM IST

Ankara: Kurdish rebels kept up their attacks on Turkey`s military overnight killing one soldier and wounding another in the country`s east, bringing this weekend`s death toll to 12 soldiers, a news agency reported on Sunday.

Clashes broke out between soldiers and militants from the outlawed Kurdistan Workers` Party (PKK) after the rebels attacked a barracks near Palu in eastern Turkey, the agency said.

Security forces launched a search operation to find the assailants, the agency added.

Saturday was the bloodiest day in two years for the Turkish army after Kurdish rebels killed 11 soldiers in the far southeast of the country near the border with Iraq, the army said.

According to the military, 12 rebels died in a counter-attack.

Turkish warplanes also launched bombing raids on Kurdish rebel outposts in neighbouring Iraq where the separatists have established rear bases for some 2,000 fighters, the military said.

The PKK has vowed to launch attacks in all Turkish cities if the government maintains its policy of military confrontation, a rebel spokesman told a news agency on Saturday.

Turkish Prime Minister Recep Tayyip Erdogan has vowed to keep up the fight against the separatists and said Turkey was willing to "pay the price" to "annihilate" the PKK.

The mounting violence in recent months has undermined the government`s bid to reach a peaceful end to the 26-year-old conflict with Kurdish rebels seeking a separate homeland in the country`s southeast.

The conflict with the PKK, considered a terrorist organisation by Turkey and much of the international community, has claimed more than 45,000 lives since it began in 1984, according to the army.

Bureau Report