Kurdish militants on Friday attacked a police checkpoint in southeast Turkey with an explosives-laden truck, killing at least 11 police officers and wounding 78 other people, officials and the state-run news agency said.
The attack struck the checkpoint 50 meters (yards) from a main police station near the town of Cizre, in the mainly-Kurdish Sirnak province that borders Syria, the Anadolu Agency reported.
There was no immediate claim of responsibility for the attack, which was the latest in a string of bombings targeting police or military vehicles and facilities. Authorities have blamed the Kurdistan Workers’ Party, or PKK, for those attacks.
Turkish Prime Minister Binali Yildirim confirmed the death toll, saying it was a suicide attack carried out with an explosives-laden truck. He vowed to “destroy the terrorists.”
“No terrorist organization can take the Turkish Republic hostage,” he told reporters in Istanbul. “We will give these scoundrels every response they deserve.”
Television footage showed black smoke rising from the mangled truck. The three-story police station was gutted from the powerful explosion.
According to Sirnak governor’s office, three of the wounded were civilians. The Health Ministry sent 12 ambulances and two helicopters to the site.