Radical Kurdish group close to PKK claims Ankara attack

The wreckage of a bus and a car are pictured at the scene of a blast in Ankara on March 13, 2016. At least 27 people were killed and 75 others wounded in a blast in the heart of the Turkish capital Ankara, local media reported, speaking of an attack. Ambulances rushed to the scene of the explosion on Kizilay square, a key hub in the city, and television pictures showed burnt-out vehicles including a bus.  / AFP / EROL UCEM

Ankara / AFP

A radical Kurdish group with ties to the outlawed Kurdistan Workers’ Party on Thursday claimed responsibility for the suicide car bomb attack that killed 35 people in Ankara last weekend.
The claim by the Kurdistan Freedom Falcons (TAK) came as Germany closed diplomatic missions and a school in Turkey Thursday over security concerns.
In a statement on its website, TAK named the woman bomber as Seher Cagla Demir, who had been involved since 2013 in a “radical fight against a policy of massacre and denial against the Kurdish people.”
“On the evening of March 13, a suicide attack was carried out… in Ankara, the heart of the fascist Turkish republic. We claim this attack targeting centres… where decisions to massacre Kurdish people are made,” the statement said.
The group said it was a response to security operations by Turkish forces in the Kurdish-dominated southeast of the country. “This action was carried out to avenge the 300 Kurds killed in Cizre as well as our civilians who were wounded,” the statement said. “We would like to apologise for the civilian losses which had nothing to do with the dirty war being waged by the fascist Turkish republic,” the group added.
In February, Turkish forces ended an almost two-month military offensive backed by a curfew against Kurdish rebels in the southeastern town of Cizre.
Turkey has suffered five major bombings since July last year, killing more than 200 people, including two in Ankara in less than a month. Foreign missions in the capital have heightened security measures.
The German embassy in Ankara as well as the consulate and German school in Istanbul were closed on Thursday for security reasons, the consulate said on its website.
Last January, 12 German tourists were killed in a suicide attack blamed on the IS group in the heart of Istanbul’s tourist district.

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