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PKK blamed for foiled Ankara bombing

Two suicide bombers detonated their explosives during a standoff with police outside Ankara when officers stopped their vehicle. No one else is believed to have been harmed in the blast, which has been blamed on the PKK.

Ankara Governor Erkan Topaca said Saturday that two suicide bombers blew themselves up near a horse farm on the outskirts of the capital after police, acting on a tip, stopped their vehicle and ordered them to surrender.

The unidentified pair, a man and woman, set off the car bomb they had prepared, Turkey's state-run Anadolu news agency reported, adding that the two suspects were the only casualties.

Private television channel CNN Turk reported that the two were believed to have been in possession of plastic explosives and 200 kilograms (440 pounds) of ammonium nitrate. Topaca said the assailants were suspected to have links to the outlawed Kurdistan Workers' Party (PKK), which has carried out a series of suicide car bombings over the past year.

"The organization they are connected to is not clear yet, but according to information we have received, it is highly likely that (the man) is linked to the PKK," Topaca said. "The way the incident was carried out and planned points at the PKK."

The PKK has waged a decadeslong insurgency against the Turkish state and advocates for political autonomy and cultural rights for Turkey's Kurdish minority. Extreme leftist and Islamist militants have also carried out bombings in Turkey in the past, with the 'Islamic State' (IS) militant group blamed for some recent attacks.

jar/jlw (AP, AFP)

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