Three killed as Turk forces clash with Kurd rebels

DIYARBAKIR, Turkey Sat May 29, 2010 10:54am EDT

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DIYARBAKIR, Turkey (Reuters) - Three members of Turkey's security forces were killed and two soldiers were wounded in clashes with Kurdish rebels in southeast Turkey, military sources told Reuters on Saturday.

Violence between the Turkish armed forces and the Kurdistan Workers Party (PKK) guerrillas has escalated in recent weeks as warmer weather reaches mountains in southeast Turkey and northern Iraq where the militants are active.

The sources said the latest fighting broke out in Sirnak province close to the Iraqi border, where several thousand of the separatist PKK rebels are based.

The operation comes eight days after Turkish warplanes bombed some 50 PKK targets in northern Iraq.

The PKK took up arms against the Turkish state in 1984 with the aim of creating an independent homeland in the mainly Kurdish southeast of the country.

More than 40,000 people have died in the conflict.

(Writing by Alexandra Hudson; Editing by Louise Ireland)

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