Turkey blames IS for Istanbul suicide blast

Interior minister says attacker has been formally identified and is linked to terrorist organisation Daesh

Afp March 20, 2016
A woman places carnations and a sign at the scene of a suicide bombing at Istiklal street, a major shopping and tourist district, in central Istanbul, Turkey March 19, 2016. The signs read, "We are not afraid, we are here! We will not get used to it! Beyoglu district shopkeepers". PHOTO: REUTERS

ISTANBUL: A Turkish Islamic State recruit, Mehmet Ozturk, carried out the suicide bombing that killed four foreigners on a major shopping artery in Istanbul, Interior Minister Efken Ala said Sunday.

"The attacker has been formally identified. He is linked to the terrorist organisation Daesh," Ala told a press conference, using an alternative name for IS.

One of Ankara bombers was female PKK member: Turkish security sources

Ala said five people had been arrested on suspicion of links to Saturday's attack on Istiklal Caddesi, a bustling pedestrian street in the heart of the city. Three Israelis and one Iranian were killed in the blast.

Born in 1992, Ozturk came from Gaziantep, a city in southeast Turkey on the border with Syria, the interior minister said.

He was "not on our list of wanted persons," Ala said, defending the authorities against accusations of security failings following six major attacks around the country since July that have killed over 200 people.

A tragic tale of two friends killed in separate attacks in Turkey

Saturday's bombing came six days after a suicide attack at a busy square in the capital Ankara that killed 35 people. That attack was claimed by Kurdish rebels.


Replying to X

Comments are moderated and generally will be posted if they are on-topic and not abusive.

For more information, please see our Comments FAQ


Most Read