Suicide Bomb In Istanbul Kills Five, Wounds 36

March 19, 2016

A suicide bomber attacked a major pedestrian street in central Istanbul on Saturday, killing five people, including himself, and injuring 36, officials say.

The explosion struck Istiklal Street, The Associated Press reports, a busy street full of cafes, shops, restaurants and foreign consulates.

Zeynep Bilginsoy, reporting from Istanbul, tells our Newscast unit that the bomb struck at 11 a.m. local time.

“The Istanbul governor said the suicide bomber detonated in front of the district governor’s building,” Zeynep says. “The neighborhood has been cordoned off and helicopters can be heard over the city.”

The strike comes less than a week after a car bomb in Ankara, Turkey’s capital, killed more than three dozen people. In January, an explosion in a tourist neighborhood in Istanbul killed 13 tourists.

In fact, this is the sixth bombing targeting civilians that has struck Turkey since June, Dalia Mortada tells our Newscast unit.

From Istanbul, Dalia also reports there had been some warnings about violence in Istanbul leading up to Saturday’s attack.

“The U.S. and German consulates had warned their citizens of possible attacks this weekend in Istanbul just days ago — Germany even shut its consulate, located near the bombing site,” Dalia says. “The Istanbul governor’s office dismissed those claims as ‘sensational and unserious.’ ”

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