Turkey blames IS for Istanbul bombing
The suicide bomber who killed four people in Istanbul’s main shopping street belonged to so-called Islamic State (IS), the interior minister, Efken Ala, said.
Ala named the man as Mehmet Ozturk. He told reporters that five people had been questioned so far.
Mr. Ala announced a review of security measures and curfews in seven Turkish provinces.
Three Israelis – two with Israeli-United States (U.S.) nationality – and an Iranian died in the attack. Another 36 were injured.
Eleven Israelis were among the injured. Two Irish citizens, one national each from Germany, Iceland, Dubai and Iran were also injured.
The coffins of the Israeli nationals were being flown out yesterday. The Israeli government advised its citizens to avoid Turkey.
“We have determined that Mehmet Ozturk, born in 1992 in Gaziantep, carried out the heinous attack on Saturday in Istanbul,” Mr. Ala told a news conference in the capital, Ankara.
“It has been established that he is a member of Daesh,” he said using another name for IS.
Turkey is part of the U.S.-led coalition against IS and allows coalition planes to use its air base at Incirlik for raids on Iraq and Syria.
It has been attacked by IS in the past – most recently in January when a suspected suicide attack in Istanbul killed 12 German tourists.
And more than 100 people died outside Ankara railway station in October 2015 when IS militants carried out a double bombing close to the headquarters of the national intelligence organisation.
Kurdish militants have claimed a number of recent attacks in Turkey.
President Recep Tayyip Erdogan has said terror groups are targeting civilians because they are losing their struggle against Turkish security forces.
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