At least nine people were killed and more than 100 were wounded on Saturday in an attack in the Kurdish-majority city of Diyarbakir, southeast Turkey. The Turkish authorities first blamed the Kurdish PKK movement, but the Islamic State (ISIS) claimed responsibility for the attack.
“Two police officers and five citizens, one of whom was a technician, have lost their lives. One terrorist was apprehended dead,” Prime Minister Binali Yıldırım told journalists at a press briefing, blaming the Kurdistan Workers Party (PKK). This although the PKK did not claim responsibility.
However, ISIS claimed responsibility for the attack through a statement released by the Jihadi Amaq Agency.
“Fighters from Islamic State blew up a parked car rigged with explosives in front of a Turkish police HQ in Diyarbakir, southeast Turkey,” Amaq said.
The attack follows a call by ISIS leader Abu Bakr al-Baghdadi last Tuesday on his followers to attack Turkey.
“This is far more of a claim of a direct attack on the Turkish state. I am sure ISIS operatives did other large-scale attacks in Turkey before but they weren’t claimed officially,” Aymenn al-Tamimi, a fellow at the Middle East Forum said.
Aymenn al-Tamimi is one of the world’s preeminent authorities on ISIS.