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Explosion at Governing Party Office Kills One

November 5, 1987

ISTANBUL, Turkey (AP) _ A bomb blew up in an office of the Motherland Party Wednesday, killing a tea vendor and slightly wounding another employee, in the third attack in a week at governing party buildings.

Police Chief Unal Erkan said the explosive went off at 9:40 a.m. in an attic storeroom of the party building in the Fatih district of Istanbul.

There was no immediate claim of responsibility.

Erkan identified the man killed as Mustafa Yildiz, a 20-year-old tea vendor and cleaner who started working for the party one day earlier.

He said the device ″included a hand grenade that exploded in his (Yildiz’) hand while he was cleaning up.″ Yildiz died on the way to the hospital.

Damage to the building was minor, party officials said.

The Motherland Party is led by Premier Turgut Ozal, who is seeking another five-year term in elections Nov. 29.

Attacks against party offices in the Aegean port city of Izmir and the central Anatolian city of Kayseri last Friday injured five people and caused considerable damage.

Last week’s explosions were claimed by both the Turkish People’s Liberation Front, a leftist underground group, and the Young Moslem Revivalist Group. The groups, both unknown previously, charged Ozal with anti-Islamic policies.

Mehmet Agar, the deputy police chief of Istanbul, told reporters Wednesday that those responsible for the latest attack might have links to terrorist groups abroad. He did not elaborate.

Police said all political party offices were being guarded around-the-clock and rsearched for hidden explosives.

The liberal Istanbul daily Milliyet said Wednesday that the outlawed Kurdish Labor Party, which is waging guerrilla war in southeast Turkey, had decided to hit targets in urban areas.

About 600 civilians and about 600 Kurdish rebels have been killed since the guerrilla war began in 1984 in the mountainous southeast area where Turkey’s borders converge with Iraq and Iran. The Kurds want their own homeland.

Political terrorism in Turkey claimed 5,000 lives between 1978 and 1980. The military stepped in and toppled the government of Premier Suleyman Demirel in September 1980.

Civilian rule was restored in 1983, when Ozal’s Motherland Party came to power in elections.

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