Six people were killed and 81 others were wounded on Sunday, 13 November, when an explosion rocked a busy pedestrian street in central Istanbul
President Recep Tayyip Erdogan said the bomb attack “smells like terrorism”, but that there was no conclusive evidence to suggest that was the case.
Ambulances rushed to the scene on the packed Istiklal Avenue, which police had quickly cordoned off.
The area, in the Beyoglu district of Turkey’s largest city, had been crowded as usual on the weekend with shoppers, tourists, and families.
People attend to a wounded man after an explosion in Istiklal Street in central Istanbul, Turkey, on 13 November 2022.
Image via Ihlas News Agency (IHA) via Reuters
Video obtained by Reuters showed the moment the blast occurred in the centre of the avenue, sending debris into the air and leaving several people lying on the ground
While the specific cause of the blast was unknown, Istanbul and other Turkish cities have been targeted in the past by Kurdish separatists, extremist militants, and other groups.
A helicopter was overhead at the scene and several ambulances were parked in nearby Taksim Square.
The nearby Kasimpasa police station said all crews were at the scene, but gave no further details.
Local media said the Istanbul chief public prosecutor’s office have launched an investigation into the blast
Police members work at the scene after an explosion in busy pedestrian Istiklal Street in Istanbul, Turkey.
Image via Kemal Aslan/Reuters
The Turkish Red Crescent said blood was being transferred to nearby hospitals.
Turkey’s RTUK regulator imposed a broadcast ban on coverage of the blast around an hour after it occurred.
Surveillance footage obtained by Reuters captured the moment of the explosion
The footage can be disturbing. Viewer discretion is advised.