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Kurdish Rebels Kill Ten Turkish Soldiers, Kidnap Politician



Ten Turkish soldiers were killed and seven were injured in an attack by Kurdish rebels, which took place in the southeastern province of Sirnak, Turkish officials have said.

Clashes between Turkish military forces and the outlawed Kurdistan Workers' Party (PKK) broke out on Sunday evening at a military base in the province’s Beytussebap district, close to the border with Iraq and Syria, daily Radikal reported.

The PKK attacked the military with rocket-propelled grenades (RPG) and assault rifles, according to Hurriyet. Nine soldiers died immediately during the attack and another died later in hospital. Seven soldiers have been injured with four in critical condition at the local Sirnak hospital.

Rebels also carried out simultaneous attacks at other military checkpoints on Sunday, but no lives were claimed, according to the Dogan News Agency. Twenty PKK militants were also killed in the attacks.

On Monday, members of the PKK also kidnapped a Justice and Development Party (AKP) provincial head, said Hurriyet. Mecit Tarhan, a lawyer had been the head of the AKP for the Hakkari region for the past two years. He had been reportedly receiving threats from the PKK.

Terrorist activity has increased in the region due to the heightened unrest in Syria. A month ago, the PKK fired rockets across the Turkish army border in the Hakkari province. A recent bombing in the southeastern city of Gaziantep, which left nine dead, was also thought to have been conducted by the PKK, but the organization denies any involvement.

Turkey, the United States and the E.U recognize the PKK as a terrorist organization.

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Migrant Lives

They Migrated From Chiapas When Opportunities Dried Up, Orchids Brought Them Home

An orchid rehabilitation project is turning a small Mexican community into a tourist magnet — and attracting far-flung locals back to their hometown.

They Migrated From Chiapas When Opportunities Dried Up, Orchids Brought Them Home

Marcos Aguilar Pérez takes care of orchids rescued from the rainforest in his backyard in Santa Rita Las Flores, Mapastepec, Chiapas, Mexico.

Adriana Alcázar González/GPJ Mexico
Adriana Alcázar González

MAPASTEPEC — Sweat cascades down Candelaria Salas Gómez’s forehead as she separates the bulbs of one of the orchids she and the other members of the Santa Rita Las Flores Community Ecotourism group have rescued from the rainforest. The group houses and protects over 1,000 orchids recovered from El Triunfo Biosphere Reserve, in the southeastern Mexican state of Chiapas, after powerful storms.

“When the storms and heavy rains end, we climb to the vicinity of the mountains and collect the orchids that have fallen from the trees. We bring them to Santa Rita, care for them, and build their strength to reintegrate them into the reserve later,” says Salas Gómez, 32, as she attaches an orchid to a clay base to help it recover.

Like magnets, the orchids of Santa Rita have exerted a pull on those who have migrated from the area due to lack of opportunity. After years away from home, Salas Gómez was one of those who returned, attracted by the community venture to rescue these flowers and exhibit them as a tourist attraction, which provides residents with an adequate income.

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