Turkish police have cordoned off the area of the blast and an investigation is ongoing

Explosion rocks Turkeys capital of Ankara several casualties and injuriesFirefighters at the scene of the blast (Image: Twitter/Haider Sumeri)
news Terrorism Thursday, February 18, 2016 - 08:35

At least 28 people were killed and more than 60 injured in Turkey's capital city of Ankara on Wednesday after a vehicle full of explosives was detonated as military buses were passing by.

According to a report in the BBC, the blast happened in an area close to parliament and Turkey's military headquarters but could be heard all over the city, following which large plumes of smoke were seen rising from the area.

"I heard a huge explosion. There was smoke and a really strong smell even though we were blocks away. We could immediately hear ambulance and police car sirens rushing to the scene," a witness told Reuters.

No group has claimed responsibility for the attack yet.

However, quoting security sources, Reuters reported that Islamic State (IS) and militants from the banned Kurdistan Workers Party (PKK) could be behind the attack.

Speaking to reporters, deputy prime minister, Numan Kurtulmus said:

We do not yet know the perpetrators. This attack did not only target our military personnel in those shuttles. This attack openly targets our entire nation. We condemn those who carried it out, those who instrumentalised the perpetrators, and those who gave logistical, intelligence and even political support to such attacks.

Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan has also released a statement and said "Our determination to respond in kind against such attacks against our unity and future from outside and inside is even more strengthened through such attacks. Turkey will not hesitate to use its right to self-defense anytime, anywhere, and in all situations."

A report in The Guardian adds:

The latest attack comes at a tense time when the Turkish government is facing an array of security challenges. It is waging an all-out assault on the PKK in the south-east and shelling Syrian Kurdish fighters, while also helping US-led efforts to combat Isis.

Turkish police have cordoned off the area of the blast and an investigation is ongoing.

 

*This is a developing story

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