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World leaders condemn deadly terror attack in Istanbul

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ISTANBUL, TURKIYE: Citizens leave carnations to condemn a day after the deadly terror attack on Istiklal Avenue in Istanbul, Turkiye on November 14, 2022. (Erhan Elaldı - Anadolu Agency)
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Nov 15, 2022 - 01:09 AM

ANKARA (AA) – Heads of state and officials from around the world have extended their condolences to the Turkish nation, and condemned Sunday’s terror attack in Istanbul’s Istiklal Avenue that left at least six people dead and 81 others injured.

The bombing in Beyoglu district, which occurred around 4.20 p.m. local time (1320GMT), was carried out by the YPG/PKK terrorist organization, the Turkish government has confirmed.

Ahlam Albashir, a Syrian woman who planted the explosives in the crowded commercial hub, has been arrested along with dozens of other suspects.

“I have learned with deep anguish about the explosion at Istiklal Avenue in the heart of Istanbul,” Pakistan’s Prime Minister Shehbaz Sharif said on Twitter.

“(The) government and the people of Pakistan express deepest condolences to the brotherly people of Türkiye at the loss of precious lives and send prayers for the speedy recovery of the injured,” he added.

Azerbaijan’s President Ilham Aliyev said in a statement that Baku is “deeply shocked” by the news, adding: “I extend my deep condolences to you, families and loved ones of those who were killed, and the brotherly people of Türkiye, and wish the injured recovery.”

Swedish Prime Minister Ulf Kristersson was “deeply shocked by the news of today’s explosion in the heart of Istanbul.”

“Our thoughts are with the victims, and with all those who have lost their loved ones. We stand with Türkiye,” he said on Twitter.

Russia’s President Vladimir Putin also sent a message to President Recep Tayyip Erdogan, conveying his “deepest condolences” and “sincere sympathy and support” to the families of the victims, as well as wishes for a speedy recovery to all the wounded.

“We reaffirm our readiness for the closest cooperation with our Turkish partners in the fight against all forms and manifestations of terrorism,” Putin said.

For his part, Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelenskyy tweeted that he is “deeply saddened” by the news and extended condolences to the victims and wished a speedy recovery to the injured. “The pain of the friendly Turkish people is our pain,” Zelenskyy added.

Serbian President Aleksandar Vucic said the incident shook not only the residents of Istanbul, but the entire world.

French President Emmanuel Macron said the Turkish people were struck in their heart, Istanbul. “On this day so symbolic for our nation, while we think of the victims who fell on November 13, 2015, the Turkish people are struck by an attack in their heart, Istanbul. To the Turks: we share your pain. We stand with you in the fight against terrorism,” Macron tweeted.

On Nov. 13, 2015, terrorists carried out a set of coordinated attacks in Paris, killing 130 people.

Kosovo President Vjosa Osmani and Prime Minister Albin Kurti also expressed their “heartfelt” condolences.

Messages of support were also sent by EU’s foreign policy chief Josep Borrell, European Commission President Ursula von der Leyen, European Council President Charles Michel, German President Frank-Walter Steinmeier and Italian Prime Minister Giorgia Meloni.

NATO Secretary General Jens Stoltenberg said: “Shocking images from Istanbul. My thoughts and deepest condolences to all those affected & to the Turkish people. #NATO stands in solidarity with our Ally Türkiye.”

The foreign ministries of Pakistan, Jordan, Egypt, Saudi Arabia, Germany, India, Bosnia and Herzegovina and Greece also expressed condolences.

Separately, the Gulf Cooperation Council and the president of Bosnia and Herzegovina’s Republika Srpska entity, Milorad Dodik, condemned the attack.

Senegal’s President and African Union chairperson Macky Sall “strongly” condemned the attack and extended his heartfelt condolences to President Erdogan and the Turkish people.

Burundi’s President Evariste Ndayishimiye denounced what he referred to as a “horrific terrorist attack.” “I wish to convey my heartfelt condolences to President Erdogan and the Turkish people at this tragic moment. We must reignite our common efforts in the fight against terrorism,” said Ndayishimiye.

Condemning the attack, Somali President Hassan Sheikh Mohamud said: “Our thoughts and prayers are with the victims, the Turkish people and government. Türkiye is a valuable ally in Somalia’s security and development journey.”

Somalia’s Prime Minister Hamza Abdi Barre also decried the “heinous and cowardly” attack. “Somalia grieves with you as we pray for all who were effected. Terrorism, in all its forms, will be defeated,” he said.

The Congolese president’s office said President Felix Tshisekedi learned with dismay of the deadly attack and reiterated his commitment in the fight against terrorism alongside Türkiye. Tshisekedi expressed his support to President Erdogan, the Turkish people and the relatives of the victims.

Kazakh President Kassym-Jomart Tokayev sent a condolence message to Erdogan, saying: “I sincerely share the grief of our fellow Turkish citizens in such a difficult moment. I express my condolences to you and the families who lost their loved ones on behalf of the people of Kazakhstan and myself.”

Kyrgyz President Sadyr Japarov also conveyed his condolences to his Turkish counterpart on behalf of the Kyrgyz people, noting that his country “strongly condemns this terrorist act and fully supports the efforts of the international community to combat terrorism.”

Dominican Republic President Luis Abinader condemned the attack, tweeting: “Our solidarity with the victims and their families.”

Armenian Foreign Minister Ararat Mirzoyan, in a Twitter post, expressed his “sincere condolences” to the families of victims of the deadly explosion, and wished a speedy recovery to the injured.

“Shocking images out of Istanbul. My prayers go to those affected and to the Turkish people,” Ilhan Kyuchyuk, a Renew Europe group member of the European Parliament, said on Twitter. “Europe stands with you in these difficult times.. There can be no excuse for such acts aimed against peaceful citizens,” Kyuchyuk said.

Poland’s Foreign Minister Zbigniew Rau expressed his “deepest” condolences over the explosion in Istanbul. “I wish to express my personal solidarity and mourning to the Türkiye authorities and its citizens. Our thoughts and prayers are with you,” Rau said on Twitter.

“The terrible explosion in Taksim square has filled us with sorrow,” Panama’s Foreign Minister Janaina Tewaney Mencomo said on Twitter, extending condolences to the people and government of Türkiye.

“The news from Istanbul today is shocking and tragic. My condolences and my solidarity to the family and friends of the victims, and to the Turkish people and authorities,” Portugal’s Foreign Minister Joao Cravinho said on Twitter.

Condemnations and messages of sympathy also came from the foreign ministers of the Netherlands, Moldova, Romania, Slovakia, France, Latvia, Georgia, Uzbekistan, Albania, Bosnia, North Macedonia and Maldives.

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