Kabul condemns Ankara blasts that kill 86
KABUL (Pajhwok): Chief Executive Officer (CEO) Dr. Abdullah Abdullah and the Afghan Ministry of Interior (MOI) strongly condemned twin blasts that ripped through a rally in the Turkish capital of Ankara on Saturday.
At least 86 people were killed and 186 others injured when the two explosions hit groups of leftist and pro-Kurdish activists gathering for an anti-government peace rally outside Ankara’s main train station.
Abdullah and the Afghan Interior Ministry condemned the deadly attack in the strongest possible terms and offered condolences to the victims’ families.
Turkish media said nearly 14,000 people took part part in the peaceful demonstration calling to call for an end to the renewed conflict between the Kurdistan Workers' Party (PKK) -- a terrorist organization-- and the Turkish state.
According to Turkish Anadolu Agency, the Turkish prime minister announced three days of mourning for victims of the attack.
“Turkey has imposed a temporary ban on showing images of Saturday’s bomb attack in Ankara for reasons of “public security”, the agency reported.
Bodies of the slain activists were seen strewn across the ground after the blasts, with the banners they had been holding lying next to them for the “Work, Peace and Democracy” rally.
Sixty-two people died at the scene of the blasts and 24 more succumbed to their wounds in hospital, Health Minister Mehmet Muezzinoglu told reporters in Ankara. He said another 186 people had been injured in the attack.
Turkey's President Recep Tayyip Erdogan denounced the “heinous attack”, saying it was aimed at “our unity and our country's peace.“
Amateur footage broadcast by NTV television showed smiling activists holding hands and dancing and then suddenly falling to the ground as a huge explosion went off behind them.
Initial reports spoke of a single explosion but Turkish media said later there had been two separate blasts in short sequence.
Reports said that hundreds of people in Ankara had rushed to hospital to donate blood for the victims.
Download “Pajhwok” mobile App, on your smartphone to read and access latest news, features, interviews, videos and photos about Afghanistan.