ISTANBUL, Turkey – The death toll from a bomb explosion in a predominantly Kurdish city in southeastern Turkey rose to 10 Wednesday after three victims died of their wounds. Authorities said the bomb exploded while being carried, suggested that the explosive was intended for another target and had detonated accidentally.
It was the country's deadliest single bombing since an Al Qaeda attack in 2003.
"The bomb was made by hand, placed in a thermos and went off as it was being transported," the local governor's office said.
Seven children were among the dead in Diyarbakir, the largest Kurdish-majority city in Turkey's southeast, the state-owned Anatolia news agency reported. Fourteen other people were wounded, the agency reported.
Autonomy-seeking rebels are known to be active in the predominantly Kurdish region, but attacks against civilians in the southeast are relatively unusual.
A Kurdish news agency reported that the blast took place near an elementary school.
The bombing came as the Kurdish rebels have stepped up their attacks.
The United States and Turkey are taking measures to counter Kurdish militants who have training camps in northern Iraq and launch frequent raids into Turkey.
More than 37,000 people have been killed in fighting since rebels of the Kurdistan Workers Party, or PKK, took up arms against the Turkish state in 1984.
Both the United States and Turkey consider the group to be a terrorist organization.
Dozens of soldiers and guerrillas have been killed in a surge of violence in southeastern Turkey in recent months, leading to a Turkish government crackdown in the region, the massing of Turkish tanks and artillery along the Iraqi border and threats to attack the main guerrilla bases in northern Iraq.
Another extremist Kurdish militant group, the Kurdistan Freedom Falcons, took responsibility for a rash of bombings last month elsewhere in the country, threatening to escalate the situation.