Turkey – Attacks – Investigation

Turkey Drops Case against Police over Ankara Bombing by ISIS

Turkey Drops Case against Police over Ankara Bombing by ISIS
Fri Mar 11, 2016 21:42:39

Turkish prosecutors have dropped a probe into senior security officials suspected of negligence over a massive suicide bombing that killed 103 people in Ankara last year, Anatolia news agency reported Friday.

Turkey blamed the October attack, in which two bombers blew themselves up at a crowded peace rally, on Islamic State (ISIS/ISIL) extremists acting under orders from their leadership in Syria.

Three senior Ankara police officials, including the city’s police chief, were sacked soon afterwards amid accusations of security lapses and a wave of public anger at the deadliest attack in Turkey’s modern history.

A negligence probe into the chief, his deputy and other officers was dropped because the local administration, which has authority over security forces, refused to approve pursuing the case, Anatolia said, citing the prosecutor’s office.

After the attack, which came three weeks before parliamentary elections, opposition parties accused the government of deliberately neglecting security for the rally that was hit.

But the Ankara governor’s office insisted the same precautions were taken for the rally as for any other similar event, the prosecutor’s office said.

Four deadly attacks blamed on ISIS have hit Turkey since July, the latest coming in January in Istanbul’s historic Sultanahmet district, which killed 12 German tourists.

On Tuesday rockets fired from an ISIS-controlled area of Syria hit a Turkish border town, killing two people including a four-year-old child, after Turkey launched repeated artillery strikes in the last two weeks on ISIS positions in Syria.

Turkey has on occasion been accused by its western allies of not doing enough to combat the threat of ISIS, which has captured swathes of Iraq and Syria right up to its border.

But Ankara is now playing a key role in the US-led anti-ISIS coalition and hosting foreign warplanes at its Incirlik airbase for strikes on the group, AFP reported.

S/SH 11

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