Turkey declared Sunday a day of mourning after Saturday’s deadly attacks in Istanbul that killed 38 people and injured dozens.
Turkey’s Interior Minister Suleyman Soylu said on Sunday that 30 police officers, seven civilians and one unidentified person were killed in two separate bomb attacks at the Vodafone Arena in Istanbul’s busy Besiktas district on Saturday night.
ERDOGAN CONDEMNED THE ATTACKS SAYING THOSE RESPONSIBLE WOULD PAY
President Recep Tayyip Erdogan condemned the attacks, saying those responsible would pay. Deputy Prime Minister Numan Kurtulmus pointed to likely PKK involvement.
“Indicators point to the PKK. It clearly was a planned event. Once the investigation is done, the findings will be announced. We cannot say anything definite for now.”
AUTHORITIES SUSPECT THAT THE PERPETRATORS TARGETED A POLICE BUS
Saturday’s attack was one of several in Turkey this year. Authorities suspect that the perpetrators targeted a police bus.
Interior Minister Suleyman Soylu described as “cruel and heinous,” the blasts outside the stadium where two of the nation’s top teams squared off earlier in the evening.
The Prime Minister’s Office in Ankara declared Sunday a day of mourning. Prime Minister Binali Yildirim ordered flags to be flown at half mast as a sign of respect for the victims. President Erdogan cancelled a scheduled state visit to Kazakhstan.
World leaders used social media to express solidarity with Turkey and its people following the blasts.
In Washington, the White House condemned the attack and pledged solidarity.
“Our thoughts and prayers go out to the victims, their families and loved ones, and to all the people of Turkey,” National Security Council spokesman Ned Price said in a statement.