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Bomb attack near Turkey’s Syria border kills at least 30, dozens more wounded

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English News
English News

Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan on Sunday said the ISIS was the "likely perpetrator" of a bomb attack on a wedding in the city of Gaziantep near the Syrian border that left at least 30 dead and dozens more wounded.
The explosion -- which officials said could have been triggered by a suicide bomber -- was the latest attack to have rocked the key NATO member in a horrific year that has seen strikes and a bloody July 15 botched coup.
Gaziantep governor Ali Yerlikaya said in a statement that 30 people had been killed and 94 wounded in "an abhorrent terror bomb attack on a wedding" late on Saturday night.
Erdogan said in a statement that "Our country and our nation have again only one message to those who attack us -- you will not succeed!" he said.

Kurds targeted
The explosion took place in the Sahinbey district of the city which is said to have a large number of Kurdish residents, fuelling speculation of jihadist involvement. Reports said the wedding had a strong Kurdish presence.
Erdogan said that the aim of attacks like Gaziantep was to sow division between different groups in Turkey such as Arabs, Kurds and Turkmen and "spread incitement along ethnic and religious lines."
Prime Minister Binali Yildirim said Gaziantep would show the same spirit of its defeat in 1921 of French forces in Turkey's Independence War which led to the word Gazi (war hero) being added to its original name of Antep.
"Our grief is great but be sure our unity and togetherness will defeat all these diabolic attacks," he said.

'Likely suicide attack'
Mehmet Erdogan, a ruling Justice and Development Party (AKP) lawmaker for Gaziantep said it was not clear who was responsible for the explosion but there was a "high possibility" it was a suicide attack.
"The aim of terror is to scare the people but we will not allow this," said Deputy Prime Minister Mehmet Simsek, who also represents Gaziantep in the Turkish parliament, adding that a suicide bombing was the likely cause.
A major city lying just 60 kilometres (37 miles) north of the Syrian border, Gaziantep has become a hub for Syrians fleeing the civil war in their country.
But as well as refugees and opposition activists, there have long been fears it was home to a significant jihadist presence.
Images from the scene showed bodies covered in white sheets while distraught relatives of the victims were comforted in the street.

'More active Turkey'
The blast in Gaziantep came on the day Yildirim vowed Ankara would play a "more active" role in the next six months in efforts to solve the over five-year Syrian civil war.

Source: AFP, 21 Aug. 2016

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