Turkish prosecutor drops negligence complaint in Oct. 10 Ankara attack

Turkish prosecutor drops negligence complaint in Oct. 10 Ankara attack

Turkish prosecutor drops negligence complaint in Oct. 10 Ankara attack

People attend a commemoration for the victims of the 10th October bombings in Ankara on March 10, 2016. AFP Photo

A Turkish prosecutor has dropped a complaint filed against security officials on charges of failing to take sufficient measures both before and in the aftermath of the Oct. 10, 2015, Ankara suicide bomb attack, as the governor’s office in the capital city refused to give permission for an investigation into the officials, arguing sufficient measures had been taken before the attack and the “use of force” after was part of the police’s legal duties.

The Ankara Chief Prosecutor’s Office had “rescinded the legal action process” in the complaint filed against former Ankara Police Chief Kadri Kartal and Deputy Police Chief Cemal Dalkılıç, as well as section chiefs, bureau chiefs, deputy inspectors and other police officers, the state-run Anadolu Agency said late on March 10.

Alleged Islamic State of Iraq and the Levant (ISIL) militants bombed a peace rally near the Ankara Railway Station in a major city thoroughfare and left at least 100 dead on Oct. 10, 2015.

The complainants alleged the suspects didn’t take sufficient security measures before the rally and after the attack, saying the police threw tear gas where killed and wounded people were present, thus preventing aid from reaching the wounded, worsening the situation and resulting in the losses of more lives. 

The Ankara Governor’s Office didn’t give permission for an investigation into the suspects, the Ankara Chief Prosecutor’s Office said.

“Security measures that are taken for every meeting and rally were taken for this meeting too. Furthermore, the number of [security] personnel assigned [to the rally] was increased; there was no flaw in the measures [taken]. Intelligence information had a general feature and didn’t include any concrete information concerning the rally, and it is difficult to prevent suicide bomb attacks despite all kinds of measures,” the Prosecutor’s Office quoted the Governor’s Office’s refusal decision as saying. “The fault of not taking sufficient measures cannot be leveled at” the officials on duty, the Governor’s Office added.

Some groups prevented security forces near the Ankara Railway Station and those which arrived later from performing their duties, including evacuating the scene of the attack as a measure against another attack, ensuring the movement of ambulances and taking the scene under control, the Governor’s Office said. 

The police intervention through “the use of force by firing tear gas and water cannons and firing in the air” upon such a situation concerns the fulfillment of the legal duties imposed on the police, it also said.

Around four months after the Oct. 10, 2015, attack, a suicide car bomb attack targeted the capital city on Feb. 17, killing at least 29 people and injuring 81 others. 

The Turkish government blamed the most recent attack in Ankara on the People’s Protection Units (YPG), the militia of Syria’s Democratic Union Party (PYD), which it says is an offshoot of the outlawed Kurdistan Workers’ Party (PKK), and by extension, the Syrian government.