KRG, US and Turkey strongly condemned Ankawa car attack
Erbil, Washington and Ankara promised to continue confronting terrorism hand in hand to eradicate and defeat Islamic State and its affiliated groups.
The Kurdistan Regional Government (KRG), US government and Turkey strongly condemned the terrorist attack targeted civilians on Friday afternoon outside the heavily guarded entrance of the US Consulate in Ankawa, a predominantly Christian neighbourhood packed with cafes popular with foreigners in the Kurdish capital city of Erbil.
According to the medical sources, at least two civilians were killed, who were Kurdish from Turkey, and eight others injured, one was American.
“The KRG Council of Ministers strongly condemns the terrorist blast which took place in Ankawa district, where civilians were targeted,” KRG statement read.
It additionally said: “This crime, like any other terrorists’ crime, only strengthens our determination to confront and eradicate them.”
Erbil’s Security Directorate General announced that the security condition is stable and everything is under control, promising the people to put all efforts to protect them.
The security experts confirmed that the terrorist used a kind of plastic explosive called C-4 as it produced a huge explosion, incinerating several vehicles close to the scene.
Marie Harf, acting spokesperson for US State Department, told reporters that “no US staff member” were injured and hailed the quick response of the KRG and the security forces to control the area.
"The local fire fighters responded quickly to extinguish the fire. Local authorities also responded and secured the area. We appreciate the rapid response of the Kurdistan Regional Government. We will work with them to investigate the incident to determine the facts behind the explosion,” Harf said.
"It seems the American Consulate was the target," Nihad Qoja, the Mayor of Erbil's city center, told Reuters.
Regarding the Turkish citizens who were killed in the blast, Ankara confirmed the identity of the victims through the Kurdish medical experts.
Ankara, in addition, expressed its constant support for the KRG to tackle the Islamic State group and terrorism.
Soon after the blast, some twitter accounts close to the ISIS claimed responsibility of the blast and expressed happiness due to carrying it out successfully.
Kurdistan Region is an important partner for the US-led coalition in its campaign to "degrade and destroy" the Islamic State.
Such attacks are relatively rare in Kurdistan, which has managed to insulate itself from the worst of the violence plaguing the rest of Iraq.
The last major attack in Erbil, also claimed by the Islamic State, was in November, when a suicide car bomber blew himself up outside the governor's office, killing five.