Second attack in Turkey in less than four months

At midday today, the Turkish police have arrested a woman who seems to be connected with the deadly attack that occurred the 12th of January. Perpetrated by a Syrian suicide bomber in the touristic area of Sultanahmet in the city of Istanbul, in Turkey; this attack caused the death of 10 German citizens and injured 11 foreigners; 9 Germans, a Norwegian and a Peruvian. The German Minister of the Interior Thomas de Maizière declared that, for the moment, nothing proves that the Germans were specifically targeted. The Turkish tourism sector seemed to be the main target of this bombing.

At 10.18 am (local hour), an explosion was heard in the historical neighborhood of Sultanahmet, at a hundred meters of the Blue Mosque. The shock wave was felt for kilometers around. Less than an hour after the attack, the Turkish government forbade any dissemination of information and images concerning the events in name of “the national security”. The terrorist track was quickly evoked by the Turkish authorities who suspected the Islamic State of Iraq and the Levant (ISIS) to be responsible of this attack. Six hours after, this hypothesis is confirmed; Ahmet Davutoğlu announces that the Syrian suicide bomber belonged to Daesh.

It’s the second suicide attack organized by ISIS in Turkey in less than four months. In fact, the 10th of October 2015, two jihadists from a Turkish cell of ISIS blew themselves up in front of Ankara’s train station, capital of the country. This act, qualified of “odious terrorist attack” by François Hollande, resulted with the death of 102 persons and injured 500 persons. It’s the deadliest attack ever perpetrated in the Turkish territory. This event deeply affected the international community; Ban Ki-Moon, Secretary-General of the United Nations, said, in a communiqué, that this bombing was “a despicable crime” and he hopes that “the culprits of this attack will be quickly prosecute”. The French government has established two crisis cells at the Quai d’Orsay since 1pm; one in Paris and the other one in the French consulate of Istanbul. The same day, Manuel Valls also declared at the end of a socialist meeting in the National Assembly that “all the countries attacked by the terrorism should stick together”.

Basma Boujid

Julia Lazarus

Sarah Ben Ammar