Istanbul – Turkey’s Interior Minister Suleyman Soylu said today, the person who planted the bomb on Istanbul’s Istiklal Street that killed at least six people, has been arrested, according to state-run Anadolu agency’s English-language Twitter account.
In the Istanbul attack, at least 81 people were injured when an explosion rocked the busy pedestrian street. Turkish vice-president Fuat Oktay called it a “terrorist attack”.
“We consider it to be a terrorist act as a result of an attacker, whom we consider to be a woman, detonating the bomb,” CNN quoted Oktay as saying on Sunday.
The blast occurred on the pedestrian tourist street Istiklal on Sunday afternoon. Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan said that the death toll from the explosion rose to six.
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Turkish Justice Minister Bekir Bozdag said that CCTV footage shows a woman sitting on a bench for more than 40 minutes and then getting up one or two minutes before the explosion, leaving a bag or plastic bag behind. He further informed that earlier, a woman, who was suspected of being involved in the attack, was kept in custody.
Bozdag, who made the comments in an interview with privately-owned A Haber news channel, said Turkish security forces believe the woman is the suspect, and officials are investigating her, according to CNN.
“There are two possibilities. Either that bag or plastic bag has a mechanism in it, it explodes on its own or someone detonates it from afar. All of these are currently under investigation.
“The name of the woman is unknown. All the recordings and data about the woman are being analysed,” Bozdag said.
The blast occurred on the pedestrian tourist street Istiklal on Sunday afternoon. According to preliminary data, the city’s governor, Ali Yerlikaya, said that four people were killed and 38 were injured as a result of the blast.
“According to the information that I have received from the city’s governor, the death toll is six people at the moment, and the number of injured is 53,” Erdogan said.
The president said preliminary information indicated that the blast was a terrorist attack.“It would be wrong to say with confidence that this is a terrorist attack, but preliminary data, CCTV footage and the first information provided by the governor to us indicates that it ‘smells like a terrorist attack,’” Erdogan said.
India on Sunday, condoled the tragic loss of lives in the fatal explosion in Central Istanbul.
Apart from India, the US also condemned the attack and said that they stand shoulder-to-shoulder with their Nato Ally Turkey in countering terrorism.
“The United States strongly condemns the act of violence that took place today in Istanbul, Turkiye. Our thoughts are with those who were injured and our deepest condolences go to those who lost loved ones. We stand shoulder-to-shoulder with our Nato Ally Turkiye in countering terrorism,” White House Press Secretary Karine Jean-Pierre said on Sunday.