A deadly militant group, Kurdish has claimed responsibility for 2 Istanbul explosions on Saturday that killed at least 38 people, mostly police officers.
The Kurdish Freedom Hawks (TAK), a breakaway group of the Kurdistan Workers Party (PKK), said in a statement on its website that the Turkish people were not the target of the attack.
The Istanbul explosions, 1 large blast followed by a smaller 1, occurred about 11 p.m. local time (3 p.m. ET) after a heavily attended soccer game at Besiktas Vodafone Arena.
According to Soylu, a remote control detonated a car bomb for the first explosion. Shortly afterwards, a suicide bomber caused the second explosion at Macka Park. The two locations are less than a mile apart.
13 people have been arrested in connection with the blasts, Soylu said.
Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan, an ally of the United States in the fight against ISIS, spoke at a news conference after visiting a hospital to meet with those injured during the attacks.
“We have 38 martyrs and 155 injuries. The most important topic is how we will stand against terrorist attacks, and I want the people to know that we will fight this until it ends,”
“We will not let them discourage us and make us afraid of them. This country is its people. If you don’t have respect and care for its people then we cannot let this getaway,” Erdogan said.
The Turkish prime minister’s office said in a statement, a day of national mourning has been declared on Sunday, the state-run Anadolu news agency said.
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