Turkey: Case dropped over botched air raid

AP News
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Posted: Jan 07, 2014 8:57 AM

ANKARA, Turkey (AP) — Turkey's state-run news agency says military prosecutors ruled there was no ground for legal action against five military officers who were being investigated for negligence in the case of a military air strike in 2011 that killed 34 smugglers mistaken for Kurdish rebels.

The decision drew criticism from opposition parties Tuesday. The victims' families say they will take the case to the European Court of Human Rights.

The air raid near the border with Iraq resulted in one of the highest single-day civilian death tolls in the conflict between Turkey and Kurdish rebels.

The Anadolu Agency says prosecutors investigating the case decided not to proceed, saying the strikes were an "inevitable mistake." It says the order was given based on drone images and intelligence suggesting a terrorist presence.