AP WIRE: NEWS

Jun 23, 5:56 PM EDT

Lethal car bomb attack in Turkey's southeast



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ISTANBUL (AP) -- A car bomb attack in southeast Turkey killed a civilian and wounded at least six military personnel, according to a senior government official and media reports.

The official, who spoke on condition of anonymity in line with government protocol, said initial reports indicated a car bomb was detonated near a gendarme outpost in Omerli, a town in Mardin Province. There was no immediate claim of responsibility.

The civilian, he said, was a truck driver who was passing by in his vehicle. Six soldiers were wounded in the evening blast.

The state-run news agency gave a higher toll, saying 12 people were wounded, including military personnel. Anadolu Agency pinned responsibility for the attack on the outlawed Kurdistan Workers' Party or PKK.

Security forces, according to the agency, closed a highway in a bid to catch the perpetrators.

Southeast Turkey has become the scene of regular clashes between security forces and fighters linked to the PKK, which wants greater autonomy and rights for Turkey's Kurdish population.

A fragile 2.5-year truce between the two sides collapsed last summer leading to hundreds of casualties in the ranks of security forces and rebels.

The fighting often coincides with extended curfews imposed by authorities. It has caused the displacement of thousands of people and vast damage to infrastructure in flashpoint districts.

Turkey, along with its allies the United States and European Union, considers the PKK a terrorist organization.

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