Europe

Turkey: 'IS' link to deadly Gaziantep blast

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Media captionSecurity and forensic officials investigate the scene of the explosion

A suicide car bomber has killed two policemen in south-eastern Turkey.

The bomb went off outside police headquarters in the south-eastern city of Gaziantep, near the Syria border.

More than 20 people, some of them civilians, were injured in the early-morning explosion, which was heard several kilometres away.

Police later raided the home of a suspected member of the so-called Islamic State group, who is believed to have carried out the attack.

His father has been detained for DNA testing.

Turkey has been hit by a series of deadly blasts over the past year, linked either to Kurdish militants or IS.

Ankara, Istanbul and Bursa are among cities that have been targeted by suicide bombings.

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Some reports said gunfire was heard after the blast, which occurred at about 09:30 local time (06:30 GMT).

The police building is close to several government offices, including that of the governor and mayor, the AP news agency said.

Gaziantep, which is near the Syrian border, is known to have several IS cells.

Image copyright AP
Image caption The blast shattered nearby windows
Image copyright AP
Image caption Pieces of a wrecked vehicle could be seen near the gates of a police HQ in Gaziantep
Image copyright EPA
Image caption In Istanbul, police used water cannon to prevent people staging a May Day rally in Taksim Square

In another development, Turkish police detained four suspected IS members in Ankara, the Anadolu news agency reports.

The four were thought to be preparing to launch an attack there during Sunday's May Day parades.

Meanwhile Istanbul police used water cannon and tear gas to disperse protesters trying to stage a May Day rally in Taksim Square, the scene of violent anti-government protests in 2013.

More than 25,000 police have been deployed there for May Day.

Separately three Turkish soldiers were killed and 14 others wounded in an attack that the army blamed on Kurdish militants of the PKK.

An army statement said the attack took place in Mardin province, where the army has been conducting a military operation against the PKK.


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