Police hold 27 after deadly Istanbul bombing: Report

Last Updated: Wednesday, June 23, 2010 - 21:30

Istanbul: The Turkish police have
detained 27 people as part of a probe into a deadly bombing on
a bus in Istanbul, Anatolia news agency reported on Wednesday.

The roadside bomb, detonated by remote control,
targeted a bus carrying army personnel to work yesterday,
killing four soldiers and the teenage daughter of an officer
and wounding about a dozen people.
It was not immediately clear whether the suspected
perpetrators of the attack were among the 27 detainees,
rounded up in a joint operation by anti-terror police and
special forces, according to Anatolia.

Radical Kurdish militants claimed responsibility
for the blast, the latest episode in surging violence since
jailed Kurdish rebel leader Abdullah Ocalan said through his
lawyers last month he was abandoning efforts to seek dialogue
with Ankara for a peaceful end to the 26-year Kurdish
conflict.

Ocalan`s separatist Kurdistan Workers` Party (PKK)
had threatened to spread violence to urban areas after it
killed 12 soldiers in weekend attacks in remote regions in the
mainly Kurdish southeast.

The attacks have triggered nationwide outrage and
turned up pressure on Prime Minister Recep Tayyip Erdogan for
tougher measures against the PKK, with many also urging him to
shelve plans to expand Kurdish freedoms.
Popular anger simmered at the funeral of the
youngest victim of yesterday`s bombing, 17-year-old high
school student Buse Sariyag, who was travelling on the bus
with her father. She was laid to rest in Elmadag, an Ankara
suburb.

"The martyrs are immortal, the motherland is
indivisible," shouted a crowd of some 5,000 people, waving
Turkish flags, as they marched to the cemetary after funeral
prayers at a local mosque.

Army chief Ilker Basbug and Deputy Prime Minister
Cemil Cicek attended the funeral.

Erdogan`s government has pledged to boost Kurdish
freedoms and economic development in the southeast, hoping to
discourage separatism and cajole the PKK into laying down
arms.

PTI



First Published: Wednesday, June 23, 2010 - 21:30

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