Turkish police detains 25 over rocket attacks in Antalya

October 15, 2016 5:30 pm

Forensic officers work at the scene of a motor-bike bomb explosion next to a police station as soldiers patrol in Istanbul, , on October 6, 2016. (Photo by AFP)

Turkish police have detained at least 25 people over alleged links to Kurdish militants, a day after two rockets hit the southern Mediterranean province of .
Citing police sources, local media reported that the suspects, believed to be affiliated with the outlawed Kurdistan Workers’ Party (PKK), were detained during a series of raids on Saturday.
The rockets, fired by unknown assailants, struck a roadside fishmonger in Antalya, one of the country’s most popular tourism spots on Friday, but caused no casualties.
Police launched simultaneous raids across Turkey, including the capital, Ankara, as well as Istanbul, in a bid to find the suspects.
No group or individual has yet claimed responsibility for the attack.
However, Kurdish and far-left militants have staged similar attacks in the past, mostly against security forces. At least three Turkish soldiers were injured in an armed attack on their vehicle near Antalya in August.
The province of Antalya is located next to the popular tourist areas of Marmaris and Bodrum, and just north of Cyprus. Situated on the sun-drenched Mediterranean coast, the Antalya region is one of Turkey’s most popular tourist destinations.
The country has witnessed deadly bomb attacks over the past few months. 
Ankara has been engaged in a large-scale anti-PKK campaign in its southern border region over the past few months. The Turkish military has also been pounding the group’s positions in northern Iraq as well in breach of the Arab country’s sovereignty.
Turkey’s operations began in the wake of a deadly July 2015 bombing in Suruc, which the Turkish government blamed on the Daesh Takfiri terrorist group.
After the bombing, the PKK militants, who accuse Ankara of supporting Daesh, engaged in a series of reprisal attacks against Turkish police and security forces, prompting the Turkish military operations.
A shaky ceasefire between Ankara and the PKK that had stood since 2013 was declared null and void by the militants following the Turkish strikes against the group.
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