Tunceli Governor Mustafa Taşkesen told the press that the incident took place while a search team from the Tunceli 4th Brigade Command was demining an area where the terrorist Kurdistan Workers' Party (PKK) had planted landmines. An air-backed operation began in the area immediately after the incident occurred.
Furthermore, two privates and a noncommissioned officer were killed in a clash between Turkish security forces and the PKK at a gendarmerie post in Tunceli on Friday.
The PKK, which has been fighting for autonomy in Turkey's mainly Kurdish Southeast since 1984, was founded on Marxist ideology. Turkey has been conducting airstrikes on PKK camps in northern Iraq's mountainous region and inside Turkey since August of last year, following an increase in attacks on Turkish troops and civilians by the PKK.
The conflict has claimed tens of thousands of lives. The group is labeled a terrorist organization by the European Union and the United States, which has supplied Predator drones to assist Turkey.