At least 36 killed in terror attack on Istanbul’s Atatürk Airport: PM


At least 36 people were killed and many others(at least 147 people) were wounded in a suicide bomb and gun attack on Istanbul’s Atatürk Airport late on June 28, Turkish Prime Minister Binali Yıldırım said in a press briefing at the crime scene, adding that findings pointed to Islamic State of Iraq and the Levant (ISIL).

However, the efforts on the identity of the attackers continues, he said.

The prime minister said three attackers arrived in the airport on a taxi cab and also used guns during the attack.

All three attackers exploded themselves and were killed, he added.

Yıldırım said there might be foreigners among the victims as police officers were also wounded.

The attack was carried out at the international terminal of the airport with a gun attack, he said.

Justice Minister Bekir Bozdağ said at least one attacker first opened fire with a Kalashnikov rifle before detonating himself.

A witness told CNN Türk that gunfire was heard from the car park at the airport.

A number of ambulances were also deployed to the scene, while taxis also transported wounded people to hospitals, according to an eyewitness speaking to CNN Türk.

Meanwhile, PM Yıldırım ordered the formation of a crisis desk into the incident.

President Recep Tayyip Erdoğan released a statement on the attack, saying that he “strongly condemns” it.

An unconfirmed video shared on social media and reportedly shot during the Istanbul terror attack showed a police officer wounding an unidentified man. The footage then showed the wounded man lying on the ground blowing himself up only seconds after the officer ran away.

Entries and exits to the airport have been blocked, while authorities appealed to motorists to vacate roads on the approach to the site to facilitate the arrival of emergency services.

Red Crescent Chair Kerem Kınık said there was no need for citizens to descend upon hospitals to donate blood at the moment, asking motorists to avoid creating traffic in front of medical centers. Kınık, however, asked citizens to donate blood at a variety of mobile blood centers established around the city.

Some flights to Ataturk Airport have been diverted after attack on the airport, agencies reported.

Flights from the airport were also canceled.

Yıldırım said flights resumed at around 2 a.m.

Erdoğan held an urgent meeting with Yıldırım, several ministers and Chief of General Staff Hulusi Akar in Ankara before the prime minister move to Istanbul for further inspections.

Meanwhile, an NBC News reporter, who witnessed the explosions, wrote on Twitter that he saw a police officer wrestle a suicide bomber to the ground and that the attacker then detonated his bomb, Reuters reported. However, the information was not confirmed.

All three opposition parties in the parliament condemned the attack.