Turkish Kurds vent rage at raid
Published 31/12/2011 | 05:00
TURKISH Kurds vented their rage today over a botched military air strike aimed at Kurdish rebels that instead killed 35 civilians, with thousands lamenting the dead at funerals and scores clashing with police at demonstrations.
The government promised a full inquiry into Wednesday's air strikes which struck a group of smugglers and resulted in one of the highest single-day civilian death tolls in the long-standing conflict between the Turkish state and Kurdish rebels, who took up arms in 1984.
Footage from the Dogan news agency showed people digging graves on a hill near the home village of some of the smugglers, and the funeral rites quickly took on a political tone.
Thousands walked along a mountain path with coffins draped in red, yellow and green, the colours associated with Kurdish identity and the rebel group PKK, whose Kurdish acronym stands for Kurdistan Workers' Party.
Victims' families demanded revenge and called Turkish Prime Minister Recep Tayyip Erdogan a "murderer", according to Firat, a pro-Kurdish news agency.