Heads of Ankara police force fired along with his intelligence and public security chiefs as president lays wreath at site of twin bombings
Three top Turkish police officials have been sacked over the weekend’s twin bomb blasts in Ankara as the president paid homage to the 97 people killed in the country’s bloodiest attacks.
The Turkish interior ministry said the officials fired included the head of police for the greater Ankara area, as well as his intelligence and public security chiefs, amid accusations of security lapses.
On Wednesday morning, President Recep Tayyip Erdoğan laid a wreath in front of the city’s railway station where two suicide bombers blew themselves up on Saturday in a crowd of leftist and pro-Kurdish activists attending a peace rally.
The government has said Islamic State is the prime suspect behind the attack, which also injured more than 500.
Without giving further details, Erdoğan said on Tuesday that Turkey had received intelligence indicating that the Ankara attack may be linked to Syria, where Isis jihadiss have captured swaths of territory up to the Turkish border.
The weekend bombings have raised political tensions to new heights as Turkey prepares for a snap election on 1 November, with the country more polarised than ever.
Erdoğan has admitted there were security shortcomings but said their magnitude would only be made clear later. He has ordered a top-level investigation into the bombings.
There have been growing indications that the authorities are focusing on possible parallels or even links to a 20 July suicide bombing at a peace rally in Suruc on the Syrian border that killed 34.
The government blamed Isis for that attack, which also targeted a gathering of pro-Kurdish and leftist activists.