Turkey court jails six for life over 2016 Ankara bombing

The February 2016 attack targeted a military convoy and left 29 dead and dozens wounded

Six men were handed multiple life sentences by a court in Ankara Monday over a 2016 bomb attack in the Turkish capital targeting soldiers, which left 29 dead and was claimed by Kurdish rebels.

The state-run Anadolu news agency said the suspects were each given 29 aggravated life sentences for "deliberately killing" those who died in the bombing, which also injured dozens and was among a spate of deadly attacks to rock Turkey that year.

The men, who are among 68 people on trial for the attack, were also given a further life sentence each for "destroying the state's unity and country's integrity".

They also received an additional 1,185 years in prison for the attempted murder of 75 people and transporting explosives.

Such jail sentences, which have replaced the death penalty in Turkey, carry harsher conditions than normal life sentences.

The suicide car bomb attack on a military convoy on February 17, 2016 was claimed by the Kurdistan Freedom Falcons (TAK), who have been linked to the outlawed Kurdistan Workers' Party (PKK).

It followed the collapse of a two-year ceasefire with the PKK, blacklisted as a terror group by Ankara and its Western allies, in the summer of 2015. PKK has waged an insurgency against the Turkish state since 1984.

Among the dozens of other suspects on trial in Ankara over the February 2016 attack, two were sentenced to nine years in prison for being members of an armed terrorist organisation.

Two other suspects were acquitted while dozens of other suspects saw their cases transferred to other courts, the agency reported.

Turkey was hit by a series of terror attacks in 2015 and 2016 blamed on the Islamic State (IS) extremist group and Kurdish militants.

Following the 2016 bombing TAK said it was revenge for operations by the Turkish military in the southeast of the country after violence resumed.

The last major attack in Turkey, attributed to IS, was the New Year massacre by a gunman at the Reina nightclub in Istanbul just minutes into 2017. The assault left 39 dead.