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Last Updated: Thursday, 24 May 2007, 13:06 GMT 14:06 UK
Turkish soldiers killed in blast
Map of Turkey
A landmine blast in south-east Turkey has killed six soldiers and injured 10 others, authorities say.

The soldiers were conducting a security sweep against Kurdish separatists close to the border with Iraq.

Turkish officials have blamed militants from the outlawed Kurdistan Workers' Party, or PKK, for laying the mine.

The blast follows a suicide bombing in the capital Ankara on Tuesday, that authorities said also bore similarities to methods used by Kurdish militants.

The PKK has denied any involvement in Tuesday's attack.

The landmine blast happened in Sirnak province close to the Iraqi border.

Violence in the mainly Kurdish south-east increased after the army said last month that it had launched large-scale operations against the group, who tend to step up attacks in the spring when the weather improves.

Turkey also says thousands of PKK rebels have taken refuge across the border in northern Iraq and in April the armed forces chief, General Yasar Buyukanit, urged the government to approve a cross-border military operation.

The PKK has been fighting for an ethnic homeland since 1984 and the Turkish government blames it for more than 30,000 deaths since then.

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