On Thursday, May 24, two security guards were killed after an improvised explosive device (IED) exploded near the village of Kayalar, located in Hakkâri province's Semdinli district. The authorities suspect Kurdistan Workers' Party (PKK) militants to be behind the attack. Further such attacks, e.g. targeting security forces, are possible in Hakkâri province and elsewhere in southeastern Turkey in the near-term.
Turkey has faced a Kurdish insurgency since 1984, spearheaded by the PKK, which was renewed in 2015 following the dissolution of a ceasefire. Tensions between the Turkish state and Kurdish populations have intensified further since the January 2018 launch of Operation Olive Branch, a Turkish offensive against Kurdish groups in Syria. The conflict has left over 40,000 people dead since 1984 and associated violence continues to pose a significant security risk in southeastern Turkey.
Due to the Turkish government's ongoing conflict with the PKK, some Western governments advise against travel to areas along the Syrian and Iraqi borders, as well as nonessential travel to the provinces of Şırnak, Gaziantep, Diyarbakir, Mardin, Şanlıurfa, Kilis, Hatay, Siirt, Tunceli, and Hakkâri.
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