Emergency ministerial meeting over Ankara blasts ends
An emergency security meeting chaired by Turkish Prime Minister Ahmet Davutoglu over the bombing of peace protestors in Ankara has ended, prime ministry sources said.
Deputy Prime Minister Yalcin Akdogan, Interior Minister Selami Altinok, Health Minister Mehmet Muezzinoglu, Intelligence chief Hakan Fidan, General Director of Turkish National Police Mehmet Celalettin Lekesiz and Ankara governor Mehmet Kiliclar attended the meeting.
The meeting, which began at 12:00 p.m. local time (09:00 GMT) at the prime minister's office, lasted for one-and-a-half hours, the sources said. No details of the discussions were disclosed.
The blast near Ankara's main train station killed 86 people and injured 186, according to Muezzinoglu.
The victims were mostly people who had gathered outside the station for a demonstration to be held in nearby Sihhiye Square. The rally, organized by the Confederation of Public Sector Trades' Unions (KESK), was to call for an end to the renewed conflict between the terrorist organization PKK and the Turkish state.
Akdogan, speaking to an Anadolu Agency reporter, said it was "time to act together not the time to accuse each other."
He added that discussing the upcoming Nov. 1 general election or "politicizing the incident" was irresponsible.
Deputy Prime Minister Numan Kurtulmus said the government was working to "find out the content of this treasonous attack." "We call on everyone and every person from all sections to be on alert against every kind of provocation and to act with common sense," he added.
Republican People's Party (CHP) leader Kemal Kilicdaroglu also condemned the attacks. "We all should curse the terror, regardless of whichever political view we have or whichever religion we belong to," he said in Istanbul. "We face a scene that Turkey does not deserve."
Kilicdaroglu and Peoples' Democratic Party (HDP) leaders Selahattin Demirtas and Figen Yuksekdag cancelled election events for the day while the Justice and Development (AK) Party said electioneering would be suspended for three days.
President Recep Tayyip Erdogan also cancelled his program of events in Istanbul and was briefed by Altinok and Muezzinoglu.