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Turkey Ferry Hijacked: Turkish Commandos Storm Hijacked Ferry And Kill Lone Hijacker, Say Authorities

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ANKARA, Turkey — Authorities say Turkish commandos stormed a hijacked ferry and shot dead the lone hijacker, a Kurdish rebel.

Habib Soluk, undersecretary of the Transport Ministry, says none of the 18 passengers or crew members were hurt during the raid. Soluk says "It was a successful operation."

Gov. Huseyin Avni Mutlu of Istanbul province says "I can say that he was a member of the terrorist organization," referring to the Kurdish rebel group, the Kurdistan Workers' Party or PKK.

Mutlu says the hijacker possessed some kind of device with electrical cables and a push button but bomb experts were trying to verify whether any explosives were attached, as the hijacker claimed.

Mutlu said the hijacker was "instantly killed in fast raid" without any shootout.

State-run TRT television said some people jumped into the sea during the raid. The ferry was anchored just off the coast of the town of Silivri, on Istanbul's outskirts and the governor said the passengers will be brought to the port of Silivri.

Coast guard boats and a helicopter were chasing the ferry since it was hijacked Friday evening after it set sail from the northwestern port of Izmit.

The Kurdish rebel group has not claimed responsibility for the hijacking.

THIS IS A BREAKING NEWS UPDATE. Check back soon for further information. AP's earlier story is below.

ANKARA, Turkey (AP) – A senior official says Turkish commandos stormed the hijacked ferry and shot the lone hijacker.

Habib Soluk, undersecretary of the transport ministry, says none of the 18 passengers or crew members were hurt during the raid.

Soluk told state-run TRT television that security forces were trying to verify whether or not the hijacker possessed a bomb, as he claimed.

TRT said the hijacker was dead. It says some people jumped into the sea during the raid. The ferry was anchored just off the coast of the town of Silivri, on Istanbul's outskirts.

Coast guard boats and a helicopter were chasing the ferry since it was hijacked on Friday evening after it set sail from the northwestern port of Izmit.

Authorities said a suspected Kurdish rebel hijacker, claiming to possess a bomb, had commandeered the ship.

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