ANKARA, Turkey (AP) – A suicide bomber detonated an explosive device in the heart of the Turkish capital, Ankara, on Sunday, hours before parliament was scheduled to reopen after a three-month summer recess. A second assailant was killed in a shootout with police, the interior minister said.
Two police officers were slightly injured during the attack near an entrance to the Ministry of Interior Affairs, Minister Ali Yerlikaya said on X, the social media platform formerly known as Twitter.
The attack occurred as parliament was set to re-open with an address by President Recep Tayyip Erdogan.
There was no immediate information on the assailants. Kurdish and far-left militant groups as well as the Islamic State group have carried out deadly attacks throughout the country in the past.
Yerlikaya said the assailants arrived at the scene inside a light commercial vehicle.
Television footage showed bomb squads working near a parked vehicle in the area which is located near the Turkish Grand National Assembly and other government buildings. A rocket launcher could be seen lying near the vehicle.
Justice Minister Yilmaz Tunc said an investigation has been launched into the “terror attack.”
“These attacks will in no way hinder Turkey’s fight against terrorism,” he wrote on X. “Our fight against terrorism will continue with more determination.”
Police cordoned off access to the city center and increased security measures, warning citizens that they would be conducting controlled explosions of suspicious packages.
The two police officers were being treated in a hospital and were not in serious condition, media reports said.