A high-ranking official of Turkey confirmed Sunday reports that at least one suspects of the Istanbul bombing on Saturday is related to international tagged terrorist ISIS.
A day after the suicide bombing in tourist dense Istanbul on Saturday, which claimed at least four lives, Turkey’s Interior Minister Efkan Ala told reporters Sunday the suspect of the bombing incident is a Turkish national identified as Mehmet Ozturk, 24.
According to a CNN report, Ozturk is a resident southern Turkey city of Gaziantep just a few miles away from the Turkey-Syrian border. Although the 24-year-old suspect has no previous criminal records, Ala said intelligence reports suggest Ozturk’s affiliation to ISIS, which is also locally called Daesh.
“The evidence at hand shows that he is connected to the Daesh terrorist organization. We are still considering with great sensitivity other connections or forces behind this. The fight against terror will continue,” the Interior Minister was quoted as saying by the CNN.
The report adds that two of the four fatalities of the Saturday attack were US-Israel dual citizens. An Iranian national was also killed in the blast and the fourth fatality was an Israeli national. This, the report shows, is on top of the 36 individuals who were badly injured in the blast, most of whom are still in hospitals.
The Saturday attack, which took place in a busy shopping center in Istanbul, was the sixth bombing attack since July last year. The Saturday attack came less than a week after a suicide bombing the previous Sunday in Ankara. The Ankara blast claimed at least 35.
Israel Prime Minister Benjamin Netanhayu slammed the recent attack but refused to confirm ISIS’ involvement in the attack as reported by Reuters Sunday. But Netanhayu said the Israeli government is working closely with Turkey to verify the recent report, especially since at least one Israeli national and two more US-Israeli dual citizens have died due to the blast in Turkey.
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