Bomb blast kills eight in Turkey

A roadside bomb attack killed at least eight people today in the latest violence in Turkey’s turbulent south east.

The blast occurred near the village of Gecitli in the rugged Hakkari province, bordering Iran and Iraq.

Governor Muammer Guler of Hakkari said eight were killed and three others, including a baby, were injured in the explosion. Earlier CNN-Turk television, citing Cihan news agency, had put the death toll at 12, but authorities confirmed eight deaths.

Turkish troops launched a manhunt to find the rebels believed to be behind the attack, the governor said.

The incident is the latest in a region where Kurdish guerrillas have fought a bitter war for autonomy for decades.

Rebels have targeted military vehicles with improvised explosive devices, including yesterday in Hakkari province.

There have also been several other attacks on police by Kurdish militants over the past week, which would violate a ceasefire the rebels declared before a religious holiday as a pro-Kurdish party called on the government to open dialogue for a peaceful solution.

The pro-Kurdish Peace and Democracy Party boycotted a referendum on Sunday over the constitution, arguing that ethnic Kurdish identity is not fully recognised by the state.

The rebels have been fighting for autonomy in the country’s Kurdish-dominated south east since 1984. The conflict has killed tens of thousands of people.

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