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Kurdish Militants Claim Attack on Off-duty Turkish Soldiers

  • VOA News

A destroyed public bus is seen at the scene of a car bomb attack in the central Anatolian city of Kayseri, Turkey, Dec. 17, 2016.

A Kurdish militant group has claimed responsibility for a suicide bombing over the weekend that killed 14 Turkish soldiers and left dozens more wounded in the city of Kayseri.

The Kurdistan Freedom Falcons, or TAK, said its “revenge squad” carried out the attack in a statement provided to the Firat News Agency, which has close ties with Kurdish rebel groups.

According to TAK, the suicide bomber was a 26-year-old man from eastern Turkish city of Van.

The suicide bomber exploded his car next to a bus carrying off-duty military personnel near the entrance of a university in the central Turkish city of Kayseri.

People react to an explosion that ripped apart a bus, in Kayseri, Turkey, Dec. 17, 2016.
People react to an explosion that ripped apart a bus, in Kayseri, Turkey, Dec. 17, 2016.

The bus had stopped at a red light while carrying the soldiers on a shopping trip when the car pulled up next to it and detonated.

The TAK has claimed multiple attacks in Turkey this year, including twin bombings last week that targeted police in Istanbul. The attacks killed 44 people, most of whom were riot police stationed outside a soccer stadium.

Turkish authorities believe the TAK to be an affiliate of the outlawed Kurdistan Workers' Party, or PKK.

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