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EU and US condemn terrorist attack in Turkey

Turkish soldiers carry the coffin of their comrade Volkan Kufekci during his funeral at the Ahmet Hamdi Akseki Mosque in Ankara on December 17, 2016. Thirteen Turkish soldiers were killed and dozens more wounded in a suicide car bombing blamed on Kurdish militants targeting off-duty conscripts, the latest in a string of attacks to rock Turkey in recent months. / AFP PHOTO / ADEM ALTAN

The European Union and the US have condemned a car bomb attack that claimed the lives of 13 soldiers and injured 56 others, including civilians, in the central province of Kayseri on Saturday.

“I am deeply saddened about yet another deadly terror attack in Turkey Kayseri. Terror sows only pain and hatred. This must end,” said Johannes Hahn, commissioner for European Neighborhood Policy and Enlargement Negotiations, in a Twitter message on Saturday.

“Strongly condemn terrorist attack in Kayseri this morning. We stand by Turkey , its government and people and express our deep sorrow and condolences for the victims of this cowardly act of terror,” said the EU Delegation to Turkey on Twitter.

Similarly the US Embassy in Ankara condemned the attack in a Twitter message: “We condemn the terrorist attack in Kayseri. No cause could justify such heinous acts.”

“I condemn the horrific terror attack in Kayseri. My thoughts are with the victims and their families. What Turkey really needs is peace,” said Michael Rorh, German minister of State for Europe, in a tweet.

The ambassador of the United Kingdom to Turkey, Richard Moore, also condemned the attack.

“Another dark day for Turkey. I completely condemn the terrorist attack in Kayseri this morning. My condolences to families of soldiers killed and wishes for speedy recovery to injured. UK stands with Turkey against all terrorism,” Moore tweeted.

Turkish Deputy Prime Minister and Justice and Development Party (AKP) government spokesperson Numan Kurtulmuş has blamed the terrorist Kurdistan Workers’ Party (PKK) for the car bomb attack.

He said the attack was very similar to twin bomb attacks in İstanbul last Saturday that claimed the lives of 44 people and injured 166 others.

The Kurdistan Freedom Hawks (TAK), an offshoot of the PKK, on Sunday claimed responsibility for the twin bombings in İstanbul.

Turkish Interior Minister Süleyman Soylu has announced that seven people have been detained, while police are looking for five other suspects in relation to the car bomb attack.

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