ISIL behind Istanbul airport attack and ‘belong in hell,’ says Erdoğan
AA photoThe Islamic State of Iraq and the Levant (ISIL) was “most probably” behind the triple suicide attack at Istanbul’s Atatürk Airport that killed 44 people, Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdoğan has said, adding that they “belong in hell.”
“You see what happened at the airport, and it was most probably Deash,” Erdoğan said on July 1 at a ceremony in Istanbul, using an alternate name for ISIL.
“They say they are doing this in the name of Islam,” he added. “They have nothing to do with Islam. They belong in hell. Whoever kills a soul, it is as if he has killed all of humanity. The victims are sinless, children, women, the elderly… They are traveling, unaware of what’s going on, and face death. No one has the right to do that.”
At least 44 people, including 19 foreign nationals, were killed and 239 others were injured when ISIL militants attacked Istanbul’s Atatürk Airport late on June 28, first opening fire before detonating themselves.
Erdoğan said Turkey’s fight against terrorism would continue, while slamming the outlawed Kurdistan Workers’ Party (PKK) and the Peoples’ Democratic Party (HDP), without mentioning their names.
“Hopefully, we will end this [terrorism] sooner or later; peaceful days are near,” said the president. “They [the PKK and the HDP] do not love my Kurdish brothers. On the contrary, they are the enemy [of Kurds]. Now that their immunities have been lifted, they will pay the price for what they have done.”
Meanwhile, Prime Minister Binali Yıldırım thanked the world for showing solidarity with Turkey in the wake of the terror attack.
“Many countries all across the world rushed to share our grief after the attack,” Yıldırım told reporters in Ankara before traveling to Hatay on the Syrian border.
“The Turkish flag was flown in many places in Europe, flags were at half-mast. I hope that this terror attack becomes a milestone for a common fight against terrorism, without any double standards or ‘your terrorist is bad, my terrorist is good’ rhetoric. We have long been saying terrorism is a problem of all of humanity, not just Turkey. It is good to see that this has been noticed, even if late.”
Yıldırım said the Turkish nation needed brotherhood and solidarity at difficult times, “which will soon be over.”