Ten soldiers and eight civilians were killed in an attack, which the government believes to be an act by Kurdish radicals. The militants detonated a car bomb outside a military checkpoint in South-East Turkey, the Turkish Prime Minister, Binali Yildirim, revealed, according to The Guardian
No group has admitted the attack. However, Turkey has been fighting a Kurdish insurgency for decades and fears Kurdish gains in neighbouring Syria will fuel Kurdish separatism at home according to BBC
Turkey instantaneously launched a military operation against the rebels in response. “For the stability of our country, we will continue doing everything we can to save our homeland and our nation from the forces of terrorism,” said the Prime Minister. He made a statement explaining that a pickup truck laden with about five tons of explosives made a “suicide rush” at a checkpoint outside the station.
The detonation produced a crater 15 metres wide and seven metres deep. An infantry station located behind the checkpoint also suffered heavy destruction.
The bomb exploded at around 9.45am local time outside a police station in the Semdinli district of Hakkari Province, about 77 kilometres (48 miles) from the Iraqi border.
Clashes between the PKK and Turkish forces have been ongoing since a peace process crumbled in 2015, bringing an end to a two-year ceasefire. According to CNN, since 2015, hundreds of Turkish security forces and about 5,000 PKK members have been killed in the conflict. Turkey has been rocked by a wave of bomb attacks since last summer, which killws hundreds of people and the losses were blamed on either the PKK or the Islamic State group.