Explosion In Istanbul's Sultanahmet Square Leaves People Injured & The City On Edge
Citing Turkish media, CNN reported Tuesday that a large explosion took place in Istanbul's Sultanahmet Square, a popular destination for the city's many tourists. Several people were injured and killed, according to multiple reports, as authorities attempted to secure the area. The cause of the explosion was not immediately known, though Turkey has been the site of terrorist attacks in the past.
Bystander videos posted to Twitter showed ambulances rushing to the scene. According to RT, citing Turkey's Doğan News Agency, German tourists were among the people injured from the blast. One witness told Reuters they saw body parts at the explosion site.
Sultanahmet is home to many landmarks, including the Blue Mosque, Topkapi Palace, and Hagia Sophia, a former Christian basilica that was converted into a museum. The district is a major draw for visitors, but its many historic buildings and markers also make it one of the city's most heavily guarded areas. CNNTurk.com reported that the explosion took place near the Obelisk of Theodosius.
Turkey, which borders Syria, is no stranger to bombings. In July, an ISIS attack in Suruç, a southern town not far from the Syrian border, left 30 people dead. In October, two suicide bombers killed more than 100 people and wounded hundreds more in Ankara, making it the deadliest attack in the country.