The Latest: Injured Peruvian woman about to leave hospital
Jan. 12, 2016
ISTANBUL (AP) — The latest on the explosion in historic center of Istanbul. All times local:
The mother of a Peruvian woman who was lightly injured in the suicide bombing in Istanbul says her daughter was hit in the leg by flying matter and is about to be released from hospital.
The woman has been identified by Peru's foreign ministry as Daniela Bisan Remawi Sotomayor.
Her mother, Carmela Sotomayor, told Peru's RPP television that her daughter studies Arabic in Qatar and was in Istanbul on vacation.
She said her daughter "was with two friends near the group of German tourists. She suddenly felt a strong heat in the leg and determined that a splinter had hit her. Happily, she survived."
Germany's foreign minister has said eight Germans were among the 10 who died in the attack and nine other Germans were wounded.
The U.S. has condemned the deadly suicide bomb attack in Istanbul's historic district and says it is committed to working with Turkey to combat the Islamic State group.
In a statement released Tuesday, U.S. State Department spokesman John Kirby extended Washington's condolences to the families of the 10 victims of the blast at the Sultanahmet district and wished a quick and full recovery to around 15 people who were injured.
Kirby said: "The United States reaffirms our strong commitment to work with Turkey, a NATO ally and valued member" of the coalition fighting IS "to combat the shared threat of terrorism."
All of the dead were foreign nationals and included eight German tourists.
German Chancellor Angela Merkel has expressed her sympathies for the victims of the Istanbul bombing and their families, and promised Germany would continue to fight against terror.
"Today Istanbul was the target, before Paris, Copenhagen, Tunis, and so many other areas," she told reporters in Berlin. "International terror changes the places of its attacks but its goal is always the same — it is our free life in free society. The terrorists are the enemies of all free people, indeed, the enemies of all humanity, whether in Syria or Turkey, in France or Germany."
She said she had spoken with both the Turkish prime minister and president who had informed her about the progress of the investigation, and called a special session of her Cabinet to discuss the attack.
Germany's foreign minister says eight Germans are among the dead in an Istanbul bombing and nine others are wounded, some seriously.
A Turkish official had earlier said that nine Germans had died. The reason for the discrepancy was not immediately clear.
Frank-Walter Steinmeier told reporters in Berlin on Tuesday evening that his Turkish counterpart had just given him the details by telephone.
Steinmeier pledged Germany's support to Turkey and called for a speedy investigation into who carried out the attack and why.
He urged other Germans in Turkey to take care and to follow his ministry's travel guidance.
Jose Boza, spokesman for Peru's foreign ministry, said a Peruvian woman had also been wounded. "No Peruvian citizen dead has been confirmed, but two bodies have not been identified yet," he added.
The head of Berlin travel agency Lebenslust Touristik has told Germany's Bild newspaper that some of the victims of a suicide bombing in Istanbul had booked their trip through his office.
"We have to assume that dead and injured from our tour group are among the victims," Marco Scherer said. He said the group of 33 travelers were on a trip to Istanbul, Dubai and Abu Dhabi, but had no further information and did not immediately return calls from the AP.
Officials have said at least nine of the 10 dead are German, as well as many of the 15 wounded.
A Norwegian man who was wounded in the bombing in Istanbul says his knee was pierced by shrapnel from the explosion.
Jostein Nielsen, a 59-year-old Salvation Army officer, told Norway's TV2 that he and his wife were sightseeing in the Turkish city when the bomb went off.
"I first heard a bang that I think is what detonated the bomb," Nielsen said. "After that came the real bang. I felt that my knee stopped working. There were human remains all over the place."
He was speaking from a hospital bed in Istanbul. His wife, Magna Vaaje Nielsen, was not injured.
"It was a great shock," she told TV2. "One does not think that such things will happen when you are sightseeing."
The broadcaster, which showed images of Nielsen with his left leg bandaged, said he will undergo knee surgery at the hospital.
The doctors "believe that I will be able to walk again. I appreciate that," Nielsen said.
Turkish Prime Minister Ahmet Davutoglu says the Islamic State group is behind the suicide attack in Istanbul that killed 10 people, mostly German visitors.
Davutoglu said Tuesday that Turkey is determined to battle the militant group until it no longer "remains a threat" to the country or the world.
Turkish authorities have said a 28-year-old Syrian national carried out the attack in Istanbul's historic Sultanahmet district, a main tourist hub.
A senior Turkish government official says at least nine of the 10 people who died in Tuesday's suicide bombing in Istanbul's historic district were German nationals.
The official spoke on condition of anonymity because of Turkish rules that bar officials from speaking to journalists without authorization.
The official did not have information on the 10th victim. It is unclear whether the death toll includes the bomber.
—by Suzan Fraser
German Foreign Minister Frank-Walter Steinmeier has told reporters in Berlin that he cannot rule out that Germans are among the dead in a suicide bombing in Istanbul. He said that the German government is in contact with Turkish authorities and condemned the attack as a "barbaric act of terrorism."
Chancellor Angela Merkel, speaking at a different news conference, said, "we are very concerned that German citizens could be and probably will be among the victims."
Denmark has joined Germany in warning its citizens to avoid crowds outside tourist attractions in Turkey.
The Danish Foreign Ministry updated its website following Tuesday's deadly explosion in a historic district of Istanbul that is popular with tourists, killing at least 10 people and wounding 15 others.
The travel advisory said Danes should "until further notice" avoid public places and other places where a lot of people are gathered.
Turkish Deputy Prime Minister Numan Kurtulmus says the suicide bomber who carried out an attack in Istanbul's historic neighborhood is a 28-year-old Syrian national.
Kurtulmus said most of the 10 people who died in the blast are foreigners. It was unclear whether the number included the alleged bomber.
Kurtulmus was speaking to reporters in Ankara following a high-level security meeting hastily called to discuss the attack. Kurtulmus and other ministers were traveling to Istanbul to oversee the investigation
The European Union says it stands with Turkey in the fight "against all forms of terrorism" after the explosion in the heart of Istanbul.
EU foreign policy chief Federica Mogherini said Tuesday that both sides "must step up our efforts to counter extremist violence" and noted that this had been set as a priority at a November EU-Turkey summit in Brussels.
The Istanbul governor's office said the explosion killed at least 10 people and injured 15 others. President Recep Tayyip Erdogan blamed it on a suicide bomber with links to Syria.
Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan says a Syria-linked suicide bomber is believed to be behind a blast in Istanbul that killed 10 people, and wounded some 15 others.
Erdogan said in televised remarks on Tuesday that both Turks and foreigners are among the dead. He did not provide details.
Turkey's Dogan news agency says at least six Germans, one Norwegian and one Peruvian are among the injured in an explosion in an area of Istanbul popular with tourists.
A spokeswoman for the Norwegian Foreign Ministry in Oslo said the office is working with the embassy in Turkey to check media reports of Norwegian citizens among the wounded. Seoul's Foreign Ministry also told reporters via text message that one South Korean had a slight finger injury after the blast.
The Istanbul governor's office said the explosion killed at least 10 people and injured 15 others.
Germany has warned its citizens to avoid crowds outside tourist attractions in Istanbul.
The warning follows a deadly explosion Tuesday in a historic district of the Turkish city that is popular with tourists.
Germany's Foreign Ministry warned on its website that further violent clashes and "terrorist attacks" are expected across Turkey.
It also urged travelers to stay away from demonstrations and gatherings, particularly in large cities
The Istanbul governor's office says the explosion at the city's historic Sultanahmet district has killed least 10 people. A statement says 15 other people were injured in Tuesday's blast. The cause of the explosion is under investigation, but state-run TRT television says it was likely caused by a suicide bomber.
The private Dogan news agency says at least two people were hospitalized following an explosion in the historic center of Istanbul.
State-run TRT television says the blast was likely caused by a suicide bomber, but authorities have not commented on the cause.
Private NTV television said the explosion was close to a park that is home to a landmark obelisk. The state-run Anadolu Agency says several police and medics were sent to the area.