Bomb attack kills 10 in western Iran

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Mahabad was once the capital of the self-proclaimed republic of Kurdistan in Iran. Iran’s armed forces recaptured Mahabad in 1946.

Government forces in Iraq, Iran and Turkey have all periodically battled with the Kurdish minorities straddling their borders. They fear the groups are seeking to unite territory in all three nations to form an independent Kurdish homeland.

The most active rebellion is in southeastern Turkey, where the Kurdistan Workers Party, or PKK, has fought for greater autonomy and civil rights since 1984 in a battle that has killed tens of thousands of people. They have sometimes operated from bases across the border in northern Iraq’s semi-autonomous Kurdish region, sparking a large-scale cross-border Turkish military campaign in February 2008 that involved air strikes and ground troops.

The group in Iran is a wing of the PKK and also sometimes operates inside friendly territory in Iraqi Kurdistan. Like Turkey, Iran’s military has attacked their bases on the other side of the border with occasional artillery strikes.

Inside Iran, their fight has mostly involved occasional roadside bombs and other attacks targeting security forces. Iranian authorities also linked the rebels to a terrorist cell whose members were arrested last month on suspicion of plotting to assassinate officials.

Associated Press writer David Stringer contributed to this report from London.

Copyright 2014 The Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.

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