Turkey detains 10 more people over leftist attacks

Reuters News
Posted: Mar 25, 2013 7:57 AM

ISTANBUL (Reuters) - Turkish police arrested 10 more people on Monday in connection with bomb attacks on the Justice Ministry and the ruling AK Party's headquarters which Prime Minister Tayyip Erdogan said were an attempt to derail peace talks with Kurdish insurgents.

The Revolutionary People's Liberation Party-Front (DHKP-C), a leftist militant group, claimed responsibility for the attacks in the capital Ankara.

The front's leader in Ankara province was among those held during raids on 21 sites, including the headquarters of a port workers' trade union, in Ankara early on Monday, state-run Anatolian news agency said.

Nine people were also arrested on Friday in relation to the attacks.

The Kurdistan Workers Party (PKK) militant group declared a ceasefire with Turkey on Saturday after the rebels' jailed leader Abdullah Ocalan ordered a halt to the decades-long armed campaign for autonomy.

Both the PKK and the DHKP-C were formed in the 1970s with similar leftist ideologies. But they have taken divergent paths and the DHKP-C, which is pursuing its own fight with the state, would have little to gain from a peace settlement.

The DHKP-C has followed a revolutionary and virulently anti-American path, while the PKK has focused on Kurdish identity. Tuesday's attacks were carried out following a series of raids this year on alleged DHKP-C members in Turkey.

In February, a DHKP-C suicide bomber killed himself and one security guard at an entrance to the U.S. Embassy in Ankara.

The DHKP-C wants a socialist state and often attacks what it describes as imperialist or colonialist interests and nations.

(Writing by Daren Butler; Editing by Angus MacSwan)