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Four Police Officers Killed in PKK Attack in Turkey
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Related: Turkey Extends Mandate for Striking PKK in North Iraq

Four police officers were killed and 20 others injured when a police shuttle bus came under attack by the banned Kurdish Workers' Party (PKK) in southeastern Turkey on Wednesday, the semi-official Anatolia news agency reported.

The PKK militants sprayed bullets on the shuttle bus as it was passing by Azizye neighborhood in the southeastern province of Diyarbakir, according to the report.

The shuttle bus was carrying personnel working at the Ali Gaffar Okkan Police Career Academy.

However, Turkish Interior Minister Besir Atalay was quoted as saying that up to five people, including the driver of the shuttle bus, were killed in the attack.

"As far as I was informed, terrorists opened cross fire on the bus as it was passing by. There were firebombs but most of them did not explode," Atalay said.

The attack came one day after Turkish Prime Minister Recep Tayyip Erdogan said the country would launch cross-border military operations against PKK's bases in northern Iraq if necessary.

On Wednesday, Turkish parliament approved a motion to extend by one year the government's mandate to order cross-border operations against PKK activities targeting Turkey waged from the north of Iraq.

The anger of the Turkish people is mounting after Friday's deadly attack that killed 17 Turkish soldiers in Hakkari province.

The Erdogan government and the powerful military have pledged to intensify a campaign to crush the outlawed PKK, which is branded by Turkey, the United States and the European Union as a terrorist group.

The PKK took up arms in 1984 with the aim of creating an ethnic homeland in southeastern Turkey. Some 40,000 people have been killed in the over-two-decade conflict.

Turkey has conducted frequent air raids on suspected positions of the PKK in northern Iraq. In February, it also launched an eight-day cross-border ground incursion against PKK rebels.


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