At least 32 people were killed and 75 injured in what appeared to be a suicide car bombing in the Turkish capital Ankara on Sunday, a senior security official said.
Gunfire was also heard after the explosion while ambulances rushed to the area officials said. Smoke could be seen rising above the area from a distance 2.5 km away, a Reuters witness said. The blast occurred near the central Guven Park, which adjoins a major transportation hub.
The explosion occurred less than a month after a car bomb attack in central Ankara killed 29 people. Kurdish militants claimed responsibility for that attack.On February 18,
at least 29 people were killed and over 60 wounded in the administrative heart of the city when a vehicle laden with explosives detonated as military buses passed near the armed forces' headquarters, parliament and government buildings.
The Turkish military condemned what it described as a terrorist attack on the buses as they waited at traffic lights.
Initial findings suggest the outlawed Kurdistan Workers Party (PKK) or an affiliated group was responsible, a security official said.
"According to initial findings, it seems that this attack has been carried out either by the PKK or an affiliated organization," the official told Reuters.
Turkish security authorities identified the suicide bomber who carried out the Ankara blast as Salih Necar, a Syrian national who was a member of the Kurdish YPG and entered Turkey as a refugee.
Following the attack, Turkish intelligence prohibited spreading information related to the blast and to Salih Necar on social networks, which it also did after the terror attack near the Sultan Ahmed in January.
The Turkish establishment alleges that the YPG committed the Ankara blast in order to force Turkey to stop shelling the Kurdish militias in Syria. The fact that the political wing of the PKK, the HDP, refused on Thursday to sign a joint statement of all Turkish parties condemning the Ankara attacks only reinforces the Turkish suspicions.