U.S. Embassy bomber in Turkey from illegal leftist group-minister

Security officers inspect the site after an explosion at the entrance of the U.S. embassy in Ankara.

A suicide bomber who attacked the U.S. Embassy in Ankara on Friday, killing himself and a security guard, belonged to an illegal leftist group, Turkish Interior Minister Muammer Guler said.

Speaking to reporters, Guler said the attacker could have been a member of the militant Revolutionary People’s Liberation Party-Front (DHKP-C) or another leftist group.

The U.S. consulate in Istanbul warned its citizens against visiting its missions in Turkey until further notice.

“The Department of State advises U.S. citizens traveling or residing in Turkey to be alert to the potential for violence, to avoid those areas where disturbances have occurred and to avoid demonstrations and large gatherings,” the consulate statement added.

Ankara Governor Alaaddin Yuksel said the attacker was inside U.S. property when the explosives were detonated. The blast sent masonry spewing out of the wall of the side entrance, but there did not appear to be any more significant structural damage.

The bomber was also killed.

U.S. Ambassador Francis Ricciardone emerged through the main gate of the building, which is surrounded by high walls, shortly after the explosion to address reporters, flanked by a security detail as a Turkish police helicopter hovered overhead.

“We are very sad of course that we lost one of our Turkish guards at the gate,” Ricciardone he said, thanking the Turkish authorities for a prompt response.

A Reuters witness saw one wounded person being lifted into an ambulance as police armed with assault rifles cordoned off the area.

“It was a huge explosion. I was sitting in my shop when it happened. I saw what looked like a body part on the ground,” said travel agent Kamiyar Barnos whose shop window was shattered around 100 meters away from the blast.

One witness said the blast was audible a mile away.

There was no immediate claim of responsibility. The British Consulate-General to Turkey said the blast a “suspected terrorist attack”.

Islamist radicals, far-left groups, far-right groups and Kurdish separatist militants have all carried out attacks in Turkey in the past.

The main domestic security threat comes from the separatist Kurdistan Workers Party (PKK), deemed a terrorist group by the United States, European Union and Turkey, but the PKK has focused its campaign largely on domestic targets.

Turkey has led calls for international intervention in neighboring Syria and is hosting hundreds of NATO soldiers from the United States, Germany and the Netherlands who are operating a Patriot missile defense system along its border with Syria, hundreds of kilometers away from the capital.

The U.S. Patriots were expected to go active in the coming days.

The most serious attacks of this kind in Turkey occurred in November 2003, when car bombs shattered two synagogues, killing 30 people and wounding 146. Authorities said the attack bore the hallmarks of al Qaeda.

Part of the HSBC Bank headquarters was destroyed and the British consulate was damaged in two more explosions that killed a further 32 people a week later.



News
Entertainment
Sports
Lifestyle
Local

Mayor reveals new tech hub Digital.NYC

Mayor Bill de Blasio revealed Digital.NYC on Wednesday, a new online platform aimed at connecting all things tech in New York City. The public-private partnership…

Local

Falling debris hits two men in Times Square

Two men were taken to the hospital Wednesday morning after being hit by falling debris from 110 feet above Times Square. Nancy Greco from the…

Local

Queens Assemblyman William Scarborough accused of misusing campaign…

Queens Assemblyman William Scarborough has been indicted on state and federal charges for allegedly withdrawing campaign funds as cash for personal use. Scarborough, a Democrat…

News

U.S. Secret Service director Pierson resigns under fire

U.S. Secret Service Director Julia Pierson resigned under fire on Wednesday after a series of security lapses came to light.

Television

TV watch list, Wednesday, Oct. 1: 'Criminal Minds,'…

The "Criminal Minds" team adds some supernatural assistance, as the "Ghost Whisperer" herself, Jennifer Love Hewitt, joins the show. She's playing an FBI agent, but you never know when someone…

Music

See the most popular Pandora station in your…

Who knew Bachata music was so popular?

The Word

The Word: Twilight just won't die

You thought our "Twilight" days were behind us, didn't you? Well think again. Series creator Stephenie Meyer (who would rather you not ask about "Twilight"…

Going Out

Which NYC restaurant lost its three-star Michelin rating?

A record 73 restaurants in New York City collected coveted Michelin stars on Tuesday as a mix of trendy spots and fine-dining stalwarts underscored the…

NFL

Rex Ryan fields more questions about Geno Smith,…

The idea Geno Smith will be replaced by backup Michael Vick appears to be all smoke, as the Jets are intent to ride with their second-round draft pick.

NFL

Will Beatty playing like franchise left tackle again…

Left tackle Will Beatty, who is the elder-statesman of Giants’ line, has turned around his season and become a consistent force on Manning’s blindside.

NFL

John Conner back with Jets for second stint

He'll be back. It's "Terminator 2" for the Jets, who brought back John Conner to the team on Tuesday after placing fullback Tommy Bohanon on…

NFL

Fantasy football: Ben Tate to break out, Larry…

Fantasy football: Ben Tate to break out, Larry Donnell will stay solid

Career

Creating a support system for minority women in…

When Kathryn Finney founded digitalundivided — an organization devoted to engaging minority communities with the tech world — she didn’t know quite what to expect.…

Sex

We can learn a lot from animals about…

There’s a lot we can learn about love from the birds and the bees — and the chickens, monkeys and squirrels that we share the…

Style

Saint Laurent

Our review of the Saint Laurent Spring '15 show at Paris Fashion Week.

Style

Céline: Paris Fashion Week Spring 2015

Our review of the Celine Spring '15 show during Paris Fashion Week.