A pro-Turkish newspaper Today’s Zaman claims the Kurdistan Workers’ Party (PKK) member Raşit Ali Raşit, who was arrested in August 2012 for attempting to carry out bomb attack on a government building in Hatay’s Erzin district on Aug. 13, 2012, has claimed that he is an agent working on behalf of Iran during his interrogation at Hatay Police Department anti-terror branch unit.
Raşit, who was interrogated for a week at the district gendarmerie command after he was captured, claimed to be a Syrian national. Recently, he has also been interrogated at the Hatay Police Department anti-terror branch unit and it was during that interrogation that Raşit claimed he was entrusted with the task by the Iranian government. Stating that he was an Iranian agent serving within the PKK terrorist organization, Raşit said that he entered Turkey from Syria to join the PKK in 2005.
A bomb weighing 65 kilograms was found in a vehicle parked in front of a government building in Hatay’s Erzin district on Aug.13, 2012 and defused after security forces noticed it. Two policemen who tried to capture the assailants were injured in the ensuing clash. The attackers then fled the area. A large-scale investigation was launched to capture them. One was captured but the search continues for the other two. The captured suspect was identified as Syrian national Raşit Ali Raşit. Raşit, who was initially interrogated at the Erzin district gendarmerie command, said the other two assailants are also of Syrian origin. The district governor’s house and the district police department were also attacked by PKK terrorists on the same day.
Police discovered that the bomb, which was constructed using three bottles, was made with C4 and A4 plastic explosives and strengthened with ammonium nitrate. Experts say this type of explosive is strong enough to cause damage to an area with a radius of 100 meters.
The same kind of explosives were used in the bomb attacks on HSBC bank headquarters and the British Consulate General in İstanbul in 2003, which claimed the lives of 32 people and injured dozens of others.
Making other important confessions during his interrogation, Raşit allegedly said that they had come to the district to take photos of governmental institutions located in the district and perform other reconnaissance before they decided to carry out bomb attacks. Additionally, he said that they failed to carry out the bomb attack in front of the government building that day because a problem emerged with the bomb set-up.
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