Funerals have begun to take place for the identified victims of the Ankara bombings. One male, one female bomber? Euronews correspondent Bora
Funerals have begun to take place for the identified victims of the Ankara bombings.
One male, one female bomber?
Euronews correspondent Bora Bayraktar is on the ground in Turkey. He reports the twin blasts are the work of two suicide bombers: one male; one female.
The police are said to be suspicious of a male body found with half the torso missing. There is also suspicion surrounding a woman whose body completely disintegrated.
Bora reports there is no crater at the site of the explosions.
Focus on Islamic State?
Reuters, citing two senior security sources, says “initial indications suggest Islamic State was responsible,” adding “investigations are focusing on the radical Islamist group.”
One of the sources reportedly told the news agency the bombings “bore striking similarities to a suicide bombing in July in the town of Suruc, near the Syrian border, also blamed on Islamic State.”
Turkish media is widely reporting theories surrounding a potential link to the Suruc bombing. Some suggest the male Ankara bomber could be the missing brother of the man who carried out the attack in Suruc.
If proven to be the case, this would highlight a major security lapse by Turkish authorities.
The official death toll stands at 95. Two explosions – the first reportedly larger than the second – ripped through a peace rally of pro-Kurdish and leftist activists in the centre of Ankara.
Leader of the pro-Kurdish HDP Selahattin Demirtaş said the number of victims may actually be as high as 128.
Autopsies are ongoing. The names of at least 77 victims have been officially released.
Officials warn the death toll is likely to rise. Some 248 people are being treated in hospital, almost 50 of whom are said to be in intensive care.
Who is to blame?
As the country begins three days of mourning, investigators are working on identifying the perpetrators.
Immediately after the attack, the HDP laid blame on the ruling AKP. Both parties have cancelled forthcoming rallies for the November 1 general election. However, government officials have said the election will go ahead as scheduled.
Prime Minister Ahmet Davutoglu of the AKP dismissed accusations of involvement and instead suggested ISIL, Kurdish or far-left militants could have carried out the bombings.
Davutoglu convened a hasty meeting with Kemal Kilicdaroglu, the leader of the CHP Party, in which the PM reportedly re-proposed a coalition. The opposition group had rejected a similar proposition following the June election.
A fresh election is scheduled because Davutoglu’s AKP failed to achieve an overall majority in the original vote and was subsequently unsuccessful in forming a coalition government.
In Germany, which boasts the largest Turkish population outside Turkey, some 3,000 people turned out for peaceful rallies on the evening of the explosions. The biggest marches were held in Berlin, Hamburg, Frankfurt and Stuttgart. A number of smaller memorial events were held elsewhere in the country.