ISIS be­hind air­port at­tack

Sui­cide bomb­ings blamed on ex­trem­ists

7 Days in Dubai - - GLOBAL NEWS -

The Turk­ish gov­ern­ment has blamed the sui­cide at­tacks at Ataturk Air­port on ISIS.

At­tack­ers armed with guns and bombs killed at least 41 peo­ple at Is­tan­bul’s busy air­port.

Trav­ellers and air­port work­ers de­scribed scenes of chaos on Tues­day night as gun­fire and ex­plo­sions rang out. Prime Min­is­ter Bi­nali Yildirim said ISIS was be­hind the at­tack.

Air­port sur­veil­lance video posted on so­cial me­dia ap­peared to show the mo­ment of one ex­plo­sion, a ball of fire that sent ter­ri­fied pas­sen­gers rac­ing for safety. An­other ap­peared to show an at­tacker, felled by a gun­shot from a se­cu­rity of­fi­cer, blow­ing him­self up sec­onds later. A grow­ing stream of trav­ellers, some pulling suit­cases be­hind them, fled down a cor­ri­dor, look­ing fear­fully over their shoul­ders.

“Four peo­ple fell in front of me. They were torn into pieces,” said air­port worker Hacer Pek­sen.

The vic­tims in­cluded at least 23 Turk­ish cit­i­zens and 13 for­eign­ers. The death toll ex­cluded the three bombers, who ar­rived in a taxi and even­tu­ally blew them­selves up af­ter com­ing un­der fire, ac­cord­ing to the gov­ern­ment, though there were con­flict­ing re­ports about ex­actly where they det­o­nated their ex­plo­sives.

The Is­tan­bul gov­er­nor’s of­fice said more than 230 peo­ple were wounded.

By late yes­ter­day, ISIS had not claimed re­spon­si­bil­ity for the at­tack, al­though it did is­sue an in­fo­graphic cel­e­brat­ing two years since an­nounc­ing a caliphate. It claimed to have “covert units” in Turkey, among other places, ac­cord­ing to the SITE In­tel­li­gence Group.

Turkey has suf­fered a series of at­tacks of in­creas­ing fre­quency that have scared away vis­i­tors and dev­as­tated its econ­omy, which re­lies heav­ily on tourism. The coun­try is a key part­ner in the US-led coali­tion against the ISIS group and a NATO mem­ber.

In­ci­dents in­cluded an at­tack in Jan­uary blamed on ISIS that claimed the lives of a dozen Ger­man tourists vis­it­ing Is­tan­bul’s his­toric sites and a sui­cide bomb­ing in March that rocked Is­tan­bul’s main pedes­trian street, killing five peo­ple, in­clud­ing the bomber.

ON ALERT: Se­cu­rity was high as the air­port got back to busi­ness yes­ter­day

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