Turkish police officer killed in Istanbul
September 11, 2012
The attacker blew himself up at Turkish police
station's entrance in Istanbul.
Photo: AFP/Bulent Kilic.
ISTANBUL, Turkey,— At least one police
officer died and seven people were severely wounded
on Tuesday in a suicide bombing targeting a police
station in central Istanbul, the police chief said.
"The suicide bomber set off the explosives on him
after throwing a grenade into the police station and
killed one police officer and wounded four others at
the entry," Istanbul police chief Huseyin Capkin
told reporters at the scene.
The assailant, identified as a 25 year-old male, was
also killed in the explosion, which also lightly
injured three civilians, Capkin said.
The attacker came running towards the Gazi police
station in the Sultangazi district and blew himself
up at the entrance, partially destroying the front
door and the ceiling, witnesses said.
The wounded were taken to nearby hospitals and the
toll was likely to rise, an AFP photographer at the
There was no immediate claim of responsibility for
the attack, and Capkin declined to comment on the
The neighbourhood, predominantly populated by
Turkey's Alawite minority, was the scene of mass
demonstrations in 1995 after 23 were killed in four
days of unrest, 17 of them by police bullets,
according to forensics reports.
The so-called Gazi riots were triggered after
unidentified assailants randomly opened fire on
people in March 1995, wounding dozens and killing
two, one of them a religious leader.
Locals, who blamed the deaths on an inadequate
police response, overran police stations and started
a brief unrest that was contained after troops
In May, two suicide bombers killed one policeman
when they drove into a police station in the central
city of Kayseri and opened gun fire before setting
off a bomb.
That attack killed one officer instantly, left
another in critical condition and wounded 16
including several children. The two assailants were
The outlawed Kurdistan Workers Party (PKK) said it
had carried out the May attack.
Another suicide bombing took place last October in
the eastern town of Bingol, where two people were
killed when a woman blew herself up near the
headquarters of the governing Justice and
In November 2010 in Istanbul, a bomber blew himself
up on the central Taksim square, wounding 32 people.
The PKK has several times proposed peaceful solutions regarding Kurdish problem,
Turkey has always refused saying that it will not negotiate with “terrorists”.
Since it was established in 1984, the PKK has been fighting the Turkish state,
which still denies the constitutional existence of Kurds, to establish a Kurdish
state in the south east of the country. More than 40,000 people have since been
But now its aim is the creation an autonomous region and more cultural rights
for ethnic Kurds who constitute the greatest minority in Turkey, numbering more
than 20 million.
A large Turkey's Kurdish community openly sympathise with the Kurdish PKK
The PKK wants constitutional recognition for the Kurds, regional
self-governance and Kurdish-language education in schools.
PKK's demands included releasing PKK detainees, lifting the ban on education in
Kurdish, paving the way for an autonomous democrat Kurdish system within Turkey,
reducing pressure on the detained PKK leader Abdullah Öcalan, stopping military action
against the Kurdish party and recomposing the Turkish constitution.
Turkey refuses to recognize its Kurdish population
as a distinct minority. It has allowed some cultural
rights such as limited broadcasts in the Kurdish
language and private Kurdish language courses with
the prodding of the European Union, but Kurdish
politicians say the measures fall short of their
The PKK is considered as 'terrorist' organization by
Ankara, U.S., the PKK continues to be on the
blacklist list in EU despite court ruling which
to place the Kurdish rebel group PKK and its
political wing on the European Union's terror list.
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