Istanbul explosion sees bomb attack on busy pedestrian street leaving six dead and dozens injured – – Our News, Your Views

Istanbul explosion sees bomb attack on busy pedestrian street leaving six dead and dozens injured

Image source: Sky

At least six people were killed and 81 injured after the explosion on a busy pedestrian street in central Istanbul, Turkey’s president said.

People fled after the blast at Istiklal Caddesi in the Taksim area, with video posted online showing flames exploding and a loud bang.

President Recep Tayyip Erdogan called the blast a “bomb attack” and said six people were killed and 53 wounded.

Speaking before his departure for the G20 summit in Indonesia, Erdogan said the blast was a “treacherous attack” and the perpetrators of it would be punished.

“Efforts to defeat Turkey and the Turkish people through terrorism will fail today just as they did yesterday and as they will fail again tomorrow. Our people can rest assured that the culprits behind the attack will be punished as they deserve,” he said, reported Sky.

He added that initial information suggested “a woman played a part” in the attack.

“It would be wrong to say this is undoubtedly a terrorist attack but the initial developments and initial intelligence from my governor is that it smells like terrorism,” reported Sky.

According to Sky, Istanbul Governor Ali Yerlikaya also tweeted: “We wish God’s mercy on those who lost their lives and a speedy recovery to the injured.”

He said the blast occurred around 4:20 pm local time (1320 GMT).

State broadcaster TRT showed videos of ambulances and police officers heading to the scene.

“When I heard the explosion, I was petrified, people froze, looking at each other. Then people started running away. What else can you do. My relatives called me, they know I work on Istiklal. I reassured them,”
restaurant worker Mehmet Akus said, reported Sky.

The cause of the explosion was not immediately known.

Five prosecutors were tasked with investigating the explosion, the state-run Anadolu news agency said.

No one claimed responsibility for the attack.

Turkish regulator RTUK imposed a broadcast ban on coverage of the blast about an hour after it happened. It prevents broadcasters from showing videos of the moment of the explosion or its aftermath.

Istiklal Caddesi is a pedestrian street popular with tourists and locals alike and is lined with shops and restaurants.

Turkey suffered several deadly attacks by the Islamic State between 2015 and 2017 and outlaw Kurdish groups.

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