Jim Geraghty, blogging in Turkey, sends along breaking news:
BOMBING OF TURKISH RIOT POLICE IN ISTANBUL
CNN: “The blast took place at an Internet cafe frequented by police officers from the nearby local headquarters of Istanbul’s riot police.”
Three guesses as to what the local riot police have been doing lately.
Turkish television is showing injured bomb victims arriving at the hospital. Some of ’em are just kids, or early teens. Wire services are reporting four injured.
By the way, today’s Turkish Daily News: “Protests spread across Turkey as concerns rise that bigger demonstrations may be in the offing as Friday prayers approach.”
UPDATE: SkyTurk just said 14 injured.
Jim e-mails that it’s an “ominous sign – somebody put a bomb in an Istanbul cafe frequently used by their riot cops. Yeah, the same riot cops protecting the Danish consulate there a few days ago. Sure looks to me like somebody’s trying to send a message: ‘Don’t prevent us from reaching the Consulate next time.’ By the way, tomorrow’s the day of prayer. I’d bet a kebab there’s another big protest/rally aimed at the consulate tomorrow (and maybe the embassy here in Ankara).”
Stay tuned to Jim’s blog, TKS, for more.
Istanbul’s police chief said a bomb blast on Thursday at an Internet cafe in the city had wounded 14 people.
Police had said earlier that it was a gas explosion.
“It’s a bomb explosion, there are 14 injured. One of them is seriously injured,” Celalettin Cerrah told reporters after visiting the Internet cafe where the blast occurred. Six of the injured were police officers, he said.
The blast rocked the Bayrampasa district, not far from the airport on the European side of Turkey’s largest city.
Militant Islamists carried out a series of devastating explosions in Istanbul in November 2003 that targeted British and Jewish sites and killed more than 60 people.
Other radical groups including Kurdish separatists also operate in Turkey and have in the past carried out violent attacks on both civilian and military targets.
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