According to government officials, Turkish police have apprehended a suspect in the bombing in central Istanbul that killed at least eight people and injured eighty-one.
Turkey’s interior minister Suleyman Soylu said the suspect in custody was the “individual who left the device that caused the explosion” on a major street in the country’s largest metropolis.
Soylu said the bombing on Istiklal Avenue on Sunday was carried out by the banned Kurdistan Workers Party (PKK), adding, “Our conclusion is that the order for the tragic terror assault came from Ayn al-Arab [Kobane] in northern Syria.”
The number of fatalities has increased to eight, and 81 people were injured, with two in “critical condition,” he claimed, promising retaliation against those responsible for the incident. At this time, no one has taken credit for the explosion.
The Turkish president, Recep Tayyip Erdogan, called the blast “treacherous” and “smells like terrorism” on Sunday. Erdogan alleged that a “lady had played a part” in the incident before leaving for the G20 conference in Indonesia.
According to him, the blast happened few minutes after she stood up.
Two options exist, he told A Haber. This bag either has an explosive device inside of it or is remotely detonated.
Images of the lady who is being viewed as the bomb’s purported perpetrator have been obtained by Al Jazeera.
Various groups, including Kurdish separatists, ISIL (ISIS), and others, have previously launched assaults against Istanbul and other Turkish cities. These attacks occurred most recently in 2015 and 2016.
For example, in December of 2016, 38 people were murdered and 155 were injured when two bombs went off outside a football stadium in Istanbul. An offshoot of the PKK, which has been fighting for Kurdish autonomy in southeast Turkey since the 1980s and is listed as a terrorist organisation by Turkey, the EU, and the US, claimed responsibility for the attack.
The PKK is frequently the focus of Turkish military operations, and it is also at the centre of a dispute between Sweden and Turkey, which has been stalling Stockholm’s entrance into NATO since May on the grounds that it is too lenient towards the PKK.
Many countries, including Azerbaijan, Egypt, France, Greece, Italy, Pakistan, Ukraine, the United Kingdom, and the United States, voiced their condemnation of the incident on Sunday and their sympathies to the victims.
Greece has “unequivocally” condemned the explosion and offered condolences, while the United States has said it stands “shoulder to shoulder with our NATO friend in confronting terrorism.”