Israeli Opposition Leader Condemns ‘Heinous’ Turkey Airport Attack

TEL AVIV – In the aftermath of Tuesday’s suicide bombings at Istanbul’s Ataturk Airport, Israeli opposition leader Isaac Herzog said terrorism is the main threat to all humanity.

Condemning the triple attack that killed at least 38 people and wounded 148 more, Herzog said his thoughts were with the victims.

Turkish Airlines flights from Tel Aviv were suspended following the attack, but the Foreign Ministry said no Israelis were killed or injured in the blasts.

Turkish Prime Minister Binali Yildirim said that in all likelihood the Islamic State was responsible for the attack but added that investigations were ongoing. Affirming Herzog’s assessment, Yildirim said the attack proved “once again that terrorism is a global threat.”

“This is a heinous planned attack that targeted innocent people,” he said, adding that there was no security lapse on the part of airport authorities.

Yildirim suggested that the attack may have been related to Turkey’s reconciliation efforts with Russia and Israel.

“It is meaningful that this heinous attack came at a time when we have become successful in the fight against separatist terrorism … and at a time when we started a process of normalizing ties with our neighbors,” Yildirim said.

Shortly before Tuesday’s attack, Israeli and Turkish officials signed a rapprochement deal to restore full diplomatic ties.

Istanbul is a popular destination for Israeli tourists, many of whom fly with Turkish Airlines and use Atatürk Airport for connecting flights.

Following the March 19 attack in Istanbul in which three Israeli tourists were killed and 10 more wounded, Israel’s National Security Council’s Counter-Terrorism Bureau released a statement raising the travel warning for Turkey to a “high concrete threat.”

The bureau further advised Israelis to avoid visiting Turkey and for those already there to leave as soon as possible.

The Islamic State has not yet claimed responsibility for the attack. Meanwhile, operations at Ataturk Airport were partially resumed on Wednesday morning.


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