Four held for Ankara twin blasts

Istanbul, October 19

A criminal court in Turkey ordered the detention of four people suspected of involvement in the double suicide bombing in Ankara that killed over 100 people, the Anatolia news agency said today.

The suspects, remanded in custody after going before a judge yesterday night, were charged with the “fabrication of explosive devices with the intention to kill” and “an attempt to disrupt constitutional order”, the official news agency said.

The Ankara prosecutor in charge of the case meanwhile released two other suspects and issued a warrant for nine others accused of playing a part in the October 10 attack that killed 102, the worst of its kind in Turkey’s history.

Turkish authorities have said the Islamic State group is the “number one suspect” for the bombings which targeted a pro-Kurdish and liberal peace rally calling for an end to hostilities between security forces and Kurdish rebels.

Police suspect the bombers were two young Turks from the city of Adiyaman in the south of the country, a stronghold for Islamist militants, according to Turkish media reports.

One was identified in the reports as Yunus Emre Alagoz, brother of the man who carried out a similar attack in July in Suruc, a town in southern Turkey on the border with Syria that killed 34 people. The other, identified as Omer Deniz Dundar, had twice been to Syria recently, the reports said.

Prime Minister Ahmet Davutoglu confirmed today that one of the suicide bombers had been officially identified, but would not provide any details to avoid “plunging people into panic”.

The attack has raised political tensions to new highs as Turkey prepares for a snap election on November 1, in a country that has become more polarised than ever.

Pressure has piled on President Recep Tayyip Erdogan, with opposition figures blaming him for security lapses over the Ankara attack and failing to crack down on IS.