Soldier killed in PKK attack buried in central Turkey
TOKAT – Doğan News Agency
AA PhotoThe funeral of Ufku Demirel, a soldier killed in an attack by outlawed Kurdistan Workers’ Party (PKK) militants in southeastern Turkey, has been held in Demirel’s hometown Tokat, a Central Anatolian province, attended by thousands including Republican People’s Party (CHP) head Kemal Kılıçdaroğlu.
The ceremony in Tokat’s Turhal district on Oct. 6 reduced Demirel’s family and friends in tears, one day after the 25-year-old specialized sergeant was killed in clashes with PKK militants in the southeastern province of Gaziantep.
“Our nation cannot bear this kind of sorrow. Peace and serenity should immediately come to this country,” Kılıçdaroğlu said after the ceremony, standing alongside the slain soldier’s father Cemal Demirel.
Among those who attended the ceremony in Turhal’s Cumhuriyet Square were former Labor Minister Faruk Çelik, Tokat Governor Cevdet Can, Justice and Development Party (AKP) deputies Celil Göçer and Coşkun Çakır, CHP deputy Orhan Düzgün, Nationalist Movement Party (MHP) deputy Abdurrahman Başkan, Tokat Gendarmerie Commander Adnan Arslan, and a large number of military personnel and civilians.
Demirel was killed in clashes with PKK militants in Gaziantep’s Hasanbeyli district, according to a written statement by the Turkish General Staff on Oct. 5.
He was gravely wounded at around 06:15 a.m. on Oct. 5 during an operation targeting PKK militants, who had attacked four wind turbines in Hasanbeyli on Oct. 4 with improvised explosives, the statement said.
Demirel was immediately transferred to a medical school hospital in the southern province of Adana by military helicopter, but he ultimately succumbed to his injuries in hospital despite all medical efforts, the statement added.