At least three soldiers were martyred and eight others injured on Thursday in a blast in Turkey’s northwestern Sakarya province, emergency officials said.

The country’s Disaster and Emergency Management Authority (AFAD) said the explosion occurred when explosives were being transferred to a safe area for disposal.

“The explosives that remained after the explosion were being transferred to a safe area for disposal. The blast occurred while the explosives were being unloaded from the truck,” it said.

Earlier this month, a deadly explosion at a fireworks factory in the Hendek district of the province left seven people dead and 117 injured.

Following the blast in the factory, the Prosecutor’s Office had instructed controlled detonation of the factory’s explosives in a stone pit in Taskisigi neighborhood of the Adapazari district.

Rescue workers reached the blast site.

Interior Minister Suleyman Soylu also went to the site to be briefed on the initial investigation.

Soylu said that 15 tons of explosives have been neutralized in the aftermath of the factory incident.

He added that 11 injured gendarmes and a truck driver were being treated.

*Writing by Fahri Aksut and Sena Guler

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