Ankara explosion: At least 34 killed and over 100 wounded by 'car bomb' in Turkish capital

Samuel Osborne,Adam Withnall
Sunday 13 March 2016 17:57 GMT
Ankara attack

Officials say at least 34 people have been killed and 125 wounded after a suicide bomb attack in the Turkish capital of Ankara.

A car bomb was detonated close to busy bus stops near Ankara's main square in the Kizilay neighbourhood.

Health Minister Mehmet Muezzinoglu said around 19 people had been seriously hurt in the incident, which comes just a few weeks after a bomb attack on a military convoy in the city killed 28 people.

Two of the dead are believed to be the attackers.

A destroyed bus is seen in the street after an explosion in Ankara. The exploison happened near a crowded bus station and many people were reported to have suffered injuries according to local media

Eyewitness Dogan Asik was injured in the attack:"There were about 40 people."

"It [the bus] slowed down. A car went by us, and 'boom' it exploded," he said.

Witnesses said the explosion happened near the main bus station, close to government ministries and parliamentary buildings, and several nearby vehicles were left burning in the aftermath.

Police have closed off the area around the Güvenpark in the Kizilay neighbourhood.

Turkish president Recep Tayyip Erdoğan has said:

"Turkey will certainly unite and overcome these hard times," Anadolu Agency reported.

"Terror attacks do not diminish our will to fight against terror, but further boost it."

Government sources have blamed the bombing on the Kurdish Worker's Party (PKK).

"According to initial findings, it seems that this attack has been carried out either by the PKK or an affiliated organization," the official told Reuters.

The PKK is banned in Turkey.

However, the country's pro-Kurdish party, the Peoples' Democratic Party, condemned the attack the attack and said it shares "the huge pain felt along with our citizens."

The statement was significant because the party is frequently accused of being the armed wing of the PKK — an accusation it denies — and of not speaking out against PKK violence.

Several analysts have also reported that Turkish media coverage of the event has been restricted.

It is the third explosion in the Turkish capital since October 2015.

British Prime Minister David Cameron tweeted he was "appalled" by the attack and that his thoughts were with those effected.

On 11 March, the US Embassy in Turkey warned of a potential terrorist plot to attack Turkish government buildings and housing located in the Bahcelievler area of Ankara.

Last month, a Kurdish militant group claimed an attack on a military convoy in Ankara which killed 28 people.

In October, 103 people were killed and 250 wounded when two suicide bombers targeted a peace rally in the deadliest attack in Turkish history.

Join our commenting forum

Join thought-provoking conversations, follow other Independent readers and see their replies


Thank you for registering

Please refresh the page or navigate to another page on the site to be automatically logged inPlease refresh your browser to be logged in