41 killed in shooting at Turkish wedding (Lead)

May 5th, 2009 - 6:02 am ICT by IANS  

Ankara, May 5 (DPA) At least 41 people were killed Monday night in an armed fight at a wedding in southeastern Turkey, authorities confirmed early Tuesday morning.
The families of the bride and groom at the wedding in Mardin province’s Bilge village reportedly got into an argument after which state-employed village guards took sides and the argument descended into a shootout.

At least 17 people were injured in the fight, the Dogan news agency reported.

Village guards are employed and armed by the state in order to fight separatist rebels from the Kurdish Workers’ Party (PKK).

“Forty-one people have lost their lives in the fight at the wedding,” Dogan quoted Mardin Vice Governor Ahmet Ferhat Ozen.

Security forces were deployed at the village and at hospitals treating the injured in order to stop any further violence, Dogan reported.

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