August 1, 2011 / 3:12 PM / 6 years ago

Three Turkish soldiers killed in rebel clash

2 Min Read

DIYARBAKIR, Turkey (Reuters) - Kurdish guerrillas fired on a military convoy in eastern Turkey Monday, killing three soldiers and wounding three others, security sources said.

They said the convoy was passing through Baskale in Van province when the Kurdistan Workers Party (PKK) militants opened fire.

There were unconfirmed media reports that a district official and his bodyguard were wounded in the attack, which occurred near Turkey's mountainous border with Iran.

The PKK ended a six-month old ceasefire in February and moved to what it calls an "active defense" stance, whereby its fighters defend themselves if threatened.

There has been a steady stream of militant activity in recent weeks, including abductions, in a 27-year-old insurgency which has killed more than 40,000 people.

The jailed leader of the PKK, Abdullah Ocalan, sent word through his lawyers last month that he had agreed with Turkish officials to set up a "peace council" aimed at settling the conflict. There has been no further word on the initiative.

The proposal came a month after Prime Minister Tayyip Erdogan's AK Party won an election for a third term in power and two months after Ocalan threatened war unless the government entered talks.

Reporting by Seyhmus Cakan; Writing by Ece Toksabay; Editing by Mark Heinrich

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