Six Turkish troops killed by Kurdish Workers’ Party (PKK) militants

Those killed are reported to be from a village guard militia, which acts in support of the Turkish army, in the Erud district of Siirt province.

The Kurdish Workers’ Party (PKK), an organisation classed as a terrorist group by Turkey and the European Union, also wounded four soldiers and three village guards in the attack, according to the state-run Anadolu news agency.

The assault took place in an area where roadworks were taking place, although it is not clear when the attack occurred.

More than 40,000 people have been killed in the conflict between the Turkish state and PKK since 1984, when the group launched a Kurdish uprising.

Violence generally escalates as spring arrives in Turkey’s mountainous southeast, which is mainly Kurdish.

In 2015, two-year-long peace negotiations between the Turkish state and PKK failed, leading to a fresh phase in the conflict.

Earlier this month, Turkey captured Afrin in northern Syria, after a two-month offensive against the YPG, a Syrian Kurdish militia that the Turkish government views as an extension of the PKK.

On Friday, Ankara rejected French President Emmanuel Macron’s offer to help establish “a dialogue” between Turkey and the Syrian Democratic Forces, which is dominated by the YPG.

Ibrahim Kalin, a spokesman for Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan, wrote on Twitter: “We reject any efforts to promote ‘dialogue’, ‘contact’ or ‘mediation’ between Turkey and those terrorist organisations.

“Countries which we regard as friends and allies must display an open and clear stance against all kinds of terror, instead of taking steps which amount to legitimising terror structures.”

Mr Macron’s offer came after he met a delegation of Syrian and Arab fighters in Paris on Thursday.

Newsdesk

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