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Paris seeks consular protection for Frenchman detained in Turkey

PARIS (Reuters) - France is trying to gain consular protection for one of its nationals in Turkey after he was detained there on the border with Iraq, a foreign ministry official said on Thursday.

Turkey's state-run Anadolu news agency reported the detention of a man identified as Loup Jean Rene Bureau on Wednesday, saying he had been found to have photographs and interviews with Kurdish militia fighters among his possessions.

It said he was detained last week after entering Turkey at the Habur crossing with Iraq. The crossing is less than 20 km (just over 10 miles) from northeastern Syria, where Kurdish YPG militia fighters control territory.

"The French Embassy in Ankara is in contact with the authorities (in Turkey) in a bid to establish consular protection as quickly as possible," the official said in an email to Reuters.

Consular protection can include assistance in cases of detention to help in traveling home.

Bureau appeared in court in the provincial capital Sirnak on Tuesday and was remanded in custody on suspicion of assisting a terrorist organization, Anadolu said, citing a security official.

He was also found to have a video entitled "List of weapon distribution", Anadolu said. A Twitter account in the name of Loup Bureau identified him as a journalism student who was learning Arabic.

Turkey considers the YPG to be an extension of the PKK, which has fought a three-decade insurgency in southeast Turkey and is designated a terrorist organization by Ankara, the United States and European Union.

(Reporting by Caroline Paillez in Paris and Dominic Evans in Istanbul; Editing by Andrew Callus)