Explosion outside soccer stadium in Istanbul leaves 29 dead; IS hand suspected

The twin explosions took place outside a soccer stadium in Istanbul, two hours after the ground witnessed a football match between Besiktas and Bursaspor.

At least 29 people were killed and 166 injured after twin explosions occurred outside a soccer stadium in Turkey’s Istanbul late Saturday night.

The first explosion took place outside the city’s Vodafone Arena, also known as the home to the country’s Besiktas football team. The second explosion took place exactly 45 seconds later when a suspect wearing explosives detonated it after finding himself surrounded by police in a park next to the arena. Out of 29 dead, there are only two civilians. The remaining 27 happen to be police officials. So far, ten people have been detained on the basis of suspicion.

Turkish president Tayyip Erdogan condemned the attack, saying that the blast was intended to cause maximum deaths of the civilians as the explosion took place exactly two hours after a football match between Besiktas and Bursaspor at the stadium had ended, Reuters reported.

“Nobody should doubt that with God’s will, we as a country and a nation will overcome terror, terrorist organisations … and the forces behind them,” the Turkish president said in a statement.

No group has claimed responsibility for the attack. But it is suspected that the Islamic State or affiliates might be behind such an attack.

Turkey is a significant member of the US-led North Atlantic Treaty Organisation and has launched attacks against the Islamic State in war-hit Syria. In addition to this, the country is also fighting Kurdish militants in the south-eastern part of its own land.

Istanbul has been hit by several terror attacks this year. In June, some 45 people were killed and hundreds injured after three IS gunmen carried out an attack on the city’s Ataturk airport.