Bomb warning issued for Istanbul, media reports claim
A bomb disposal expert warns people to stay away as he gets ready to examine a suspicious package at Taksim square in central Istanbul, Turkey, July 26, 2015. REUTERS photo
The Istanbul Police Department has issued of bomb attack warnings on crowded places in central Istanbul, such as metro stations and bus stops, several media reports said, in an unclear, controversial move in the wake of the Suruç bombing that left dozens dead and more than a hundred others injured near Turkey’s southeastern border early last week.
According to media reports, the statement said violent attacks could continue, based on intelligence the police department gathered, with terrorists possibly carrying out attacks in crowded places such as the metro stations of Taksim, Osmanbey, Yenikapı and Hacıosman, used by Istanbul’s thousands of commuters.
Purportedly signed by the Istanbul Police Department Deputy Head Mustafa Çalışkan, the statement recalled violent attacks following the deadly Suruç bombing that left 32 people dead and more than 100 others injured in Şanlıurfa, as well the recent vast anti-terror operations against suspected members of the Islamic State of Iraq and the Levant (ISIL) and the outlawed Kurdistan Workers’ Party (PKK).
The statement also cited rising violence against police officers after Günay Özarslan, a Revolutionary People’s Liberation Party Front (DHKP-C) member, was found dead in an anti-terror raid in Istanbul’s Bağcılar district on July 24.
The Istanbul Police Department has asked all its subunits to inform the department’s counterterrorism unit of any suspicious situations.