The PKK was said to have sent operatives as well as other supporters in
the attempt to disrupt the elections campaign. On May 4, a 25-member
insurgency squad directed by the PKK attacked a convoy meant to contain
Erdogan and his political allies in the Ilgaz mountain in southeastern
Officials said the strike, in which one police officer was killed, was
traced to PKK commanders in Kandil. They identified the commander as Murat
Karayglan, said to have been in contact with squads through tactical radios.
"Set up a big fire in Ilgaz," Sofi Nurettin, the PKK liasion of
Karayglan, was quoted as ordering the squad.
Turkish special forces have scoured the area of the attack on Erdogan's
convoy, in which the prime minister and other parliamentary candidates were
whisked away about an hour before the shootout. The forces found weapons,
ammunition and tactical radios.
The last message through the radio to the PKK command was quoted as
saying: "We have completed the attack." On May 5, the PKK claimed
responsibility for the ambush.
Officials said the PKK has been using other insurgency groups to sustain
the offensive against Erdogan. They cited Tikku, a Marxist group said to
have staged at least two attacks in the Kastamonu province over the last
"The attack in Kastamonu was launched by friends," a PKK radio intercept
was quoted as saying. "An operation is underway in Ilgaz mountain and
friends should be careful. It was really a good attack. The only target is
now Justice and Development Party."