At least 36 killed and 147 injured in Istanbul Atatürk Airport terror attacks
Multiple terror attacks targeted Istanbul’s main Atatürk Airport late Tuesday, leaving 28 people dead and 60 others wounded, Turkish officials said.
The assessments show that three suicide bombers carried out the attacks in three different spots at the airport, Istanbul Governor Vasip Şahin said.
A health official, speaking on condition of anonymity due to restrictions, said to the media that six injured were in a critical condition.
The blasts occurred at the entrance of international flights terminal, domestic flights terminal, and the parking lot.
Justice Minister Bekir Bozdağ said that one of the terrorists opened fire on people with an AK-47 automatic rifle and then blew himself up.
Turkish Airlines announced that all departing flights were cancelled at Istanbul airport until 8 p.m. local time.
The President met with Prime Minister Binali Yıldırım and Chief of Staff Gen. Hulusi Akar at the presidential complex upon receiving news of the explosion in Istanbul. Prime Minister Binali Yıldırım, Deputy PM Numan Kurtulmuş, Transportation Minister Ahmet Arslan and Family and Social Policies Minister Fatma Betül Sayan will travel to Istanbul.
According to a Turkish official who spoke to Daily Sabah on the condition of anonymity, security forces fired shots at suspects at the international terminal’s entry in an effort to neutralize them.
Eyewitnesses said that they saw some 30 ambulances enter the airport. The wounded, among them police officers, were being transferred to Bakırköy State Hospital.
Prime Minister Binali Yıldırım was briefed by Interior Minister Efkan Ala and Istanbul Governor Vasip Şahin and has ordered the formation of a crisis desk.
Security experts have said that there are striking similarities between Istanbul airport attack and the recent attacks in Brussels airport.
Meanwhile, United States Ambassador to Ankara John Bass has sent a tweet condemning the attack. “Horrified by tonight’s attack at Ataturk airport. We mourn with the families of those lost, and pray for speedy recovery for those wounded,” he said. Meanwhile, the U.S. President Barack Obama was also briefed on the attack.
There has been no claims for the responsibility of the attacks.
11 people were killed in an attack at Istanbul’s city center three weeks ago. The attack, claimed by the PKK-affiliated Kurdistan Freedom Falcons (TAK), followed two suicide bombings that hit tourist-heavy areas of Istanbul this year, which were blamed on Daesh.