PKK Claim Deadly Ambush of Turkish Troops

The separatist Kurdistan Workers' Party claimed responsibility for an ambush on Wednesday in which Ankara said eight Turkish soldiers were killed.

"Our forces have carried out an ambush against the Turkish army ... on the border," Doldar Hammo, a spokesman for the Kurdistan Workers' Party (PKK) rebels which have bases in northern Iraq, told Agence France Presse.

"Several Turkish soldiers were killed in the clashes, which have been continuing for two hours until now," he said, without giving other details.

Turkey's Defence Minister Ismet Yilmaz said earlier that Kurdish rebels killed eight soldiers in an ambush in the southeast of the country.

"They (rebels) are testing our patience... We'll retaliate in kind," Yilmaz said, quoted by Turkish media.

The attack took place in the Cukurca region of Hakkari province, close to the border with Iraq, the minister said.

The toll could rise as several other troops were seriously wounded, CNN-Turk and NTV reported.

On June 16, the PKK, blacklisted as a terrorist group by Turkey as well as the European Union and the United States, killed 13 soldiers in Diyarbakir, another southeastern province.

Turkey's conflict with the PKK has claimed more than 45,000 lives since it broke out in 1984.

Source: Agence France Presse

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