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Turkey Detains Syrian Suspect In Deadly Istanbul Bombing

ISTANBUL (AP) — Turkish police mentioned Monday they’ve detained a Syrian girl with suspected hyperlinks to Kurdish militants and that she confessed to planting a bomb that exploded on a bustling pedestrian avenue in Istanbul, killing six individuals and wounding a number of dozen others. Kurdish militants strongly denied any hyperlinks to the bombing.

Sunday’s explosion hit Istiklal Avenue, a well-liked thoroughfare lined with outlets and eating places that results in Taksim Square.

“A little while ago, the person who left the bomb was detained by our Istanbul Police Department teams,” Interior Minister Suleyman Soylu introduced early Monday. Police later recognized the suspect as Ahlam Albashir, a Syrian citizen.

The Istanbul Police Department mentioned movies from round 1,200 safety cameras had been reviewed and raids had been carried out at 21 areas. At least 46 different individuals had been additionally detained for questioning.

The suspected allegedly departed the scene in a taxi after leaving TNT-type explosives on the crowded avenue, police mentioned.

Turkish police officer arrest the individual behind lethal terror assault after raiding a home in Istanbul, Turkey on November 14, 2022. The one that left the bomb that triggered the explosion on Istanbul’s Istiklal Avenue has been arrested, Turkish Interior Minister Suleyman Soylu mentioned early Monday.

Turkish Security General Directorate/Anadolu Agency through Getty Images

Police mentioned the suspect advised them throughout her interrogation that she had been skilled as a “special intelligence officer” by the outlawed Kurdistan Workers’ Party, in addition to the Syrian Kurdish group the Democratic Union Party and its armed wing. She entered Turkey illegally by means of the Syrian border city of Afrin, police mentioned.

The Kurdistan Workers Party denied involvement in a press release, saying it didn’t goal civilians. In Syria, the principle Kurdish militia group, People’s Defense Units denied any hyperlinks to the suspect. The group maintained that Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan was attempting to collect worldwide assist for his plans to launch a brand new incursion into northern Syria forward of subsequent 12 months’s elections.

Soylu mentioned the suspect would have fled to neighboring Greece if she hadn’t been detained.

Earlier, Soylu mentioned safety forces consider that directions for the assault got here from Kobani, the bulk Kurdish metropolis in northern Syria that borders Turkey. He mentioned the assault could be avenged.

“We know what message those who carried out this action want to give us. We got this message,” Soylu mentioned. “Don’t worry, we will pay them back heavily.”

Soylu additionally blamed the United States, claiming {that a} condolence message from the White House was akin to “a killer being first to show up at a crime scene.” Turkey has been infuriated by U.S. assist for Syrian Kurdish teams.

Turkish tv broadcast footage purporting to point out the principle suspect being detained at a home the place she was allegedly hiding. It mentioned police looking out the home additionally seized giant quantities of money, gold and a gun.

The minister advised reporters that Kurdish militants had allegedly given orders for the principle suspect to be killed to keep away from proof being traced again to them.

Istanbul Gov. Ali Yerlikaya mentioned of the 81 individuals hospitalized within the assault, 57 have been discharged. Six of the wounded had been in intensive care and two of them had been in life-threatening situation, he mentioned. The six killed within the blast had been members of three households and included youngsters ages 9 and 15.

Funerals had been held Monday for the six victims, together with Adem Topkara and his spouse Elif Topkara, who had left their two younger youngsters with their aunt and had been taking a stroll down Istiklal on the time of the blast.

Nurettin Ucar, father of Yagmur Ucar, a 15-year-old victim of Sunday's blast that took place on Istanbul's famous Istiklal Street, grieves during a funeral ceremony of his wife and daughter on November 14, 2022 in Istanbul, Turkey. Turkish officials have said a woman was arrested in connection with yesterday's bombing. They alleged she was seen sitting on a bench for 40 minutes and leaving just before the blast.
Nurettin Ucar, father of Yagmur Ucar, a 15-year-old sufferer of Sunday’s blast that came about on Istanbul’s well-known Istiklal Street, grieves throughout a funeral ceremony of his spouse and daughter on November 14, 2022 in Istanbul, Turkey. Turkish officers have mentioned a girl was arrested in reference to yesterday’s bombing. They alleged she was seen sitting on a bench for 40 minutes and leaving simply earlier than the blast.

Burak Kara through Getty Images

Mecid Bal, a 63-year-old kiosk proprietor, mentioned his son was caught up within the blast and referred to as him from the scene.

“Dad, there are dead and wounded lying on the ground. I was crushed when I stood up” to run, Bal quoted him as saying.

Restaurant employee Emrah Aydinoglu was speaking on the cellphone when he heard the explosion.

“I looked out of the window and saw people running,” the 22-year-old mentioned. “People were lying on the ground, already visible from the corner of the street (I was in). They were trying to call (for help), whether it was an ambulance or the police. All of them were shrieking and crying.”

The Kurdistan Workers’ Party, or PKK, has fought an armed insurgency in Turkey since 1984. The battle has killed tens of hundreds of individuals since then.

Ankara and Washington each think about the PKK a terrorist group, however they diverge on the difficulty of the Syrian Kurdish teams, which have fought in opposition to IS in Syria.

In latest years, Erdogan has led a broad crackdown on the militants in addition to on Kurdish lawmakers and activists. Amid skyrocketing inflation and different financial troubles, Erdogan’s anti-terrorism marketing campaign is a key rallying level for him earlier than Turkey’s presidential and parliamentary elections subsequent 12 months.

Following the assaults between 2015 and 2017 that left greater than 500 civilians and safety personnel lifeless, Turkey launched cross-border navy operations into Syria and northern Iraq in opposition to Kurdish militants, whereas additionally cracking down on Kurdish politicians, journalists and activists at house.

“In nearly six years, we have not experienced a serious terrorist incident like the one we experienced yesterday evening in Istanbul. We are ashamed in front of our nation in this regard,” Soylu mentioned.

Turkey’s media watchdog imposed restrictions on reporting on Sunday’s explosion — a transfer that bans using close-up movies and photographs of the blast and its aftermath.

Access to Twitter and different social media websites was additionally restricted on Sunday.

Suzan Fraser reported from Ankara. Robert Badendieck in Istanbul, Hogir Al Abdo in Raqqa, Syria and Bassem Mroue in Beirut, contributed.



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