Accessibility links

Breaking News

Erdogan: Turkish Armory Explosion Kills 7 Soldiers


FILE - A Turkish military helicopter flies toward Iraq near Cukurca, Hakkari, Turkey, at the border with Iraq, Oct. 20, 2011.

Seven Turkish soldiers were killed and 25 were wounded in an armory storage explosion in the southeastern province of Hakkari, President Recep Tayyip Erdogan said on Saturday.

The explosion occurred at a base in Hakkari's Semdinli region near the borders with Iran and Iraq, the Hakkari governor's office said in a statement.

"We have seven martyrs and 25 wounded soldiers due to the explosion," Erdogan said ahead of his departure to France for commemorative events on the 100th anniversary of the end of World War One. Officials are inspecting the site, he said.

The Defense Ministry had said on Friday that 25 soldiers were wounded in the incident while firing heavy ammunition.

Turkey has in recent months carried out airstrikes on bases of the outlawed Kurdistan Workers Party (PKK) in northern Iraq, especially its stronghold in the Qandil mountains, where Ankara has also threatened to carry out a ground offensive.