Saturday 10 December 2016

Latest atrocity shows Turkey at risk of spiralling out of control

Urban warfare a possibility as EU-Turkey relations become more complex, writes Aengus Collins

Aengus Collins

Published 20/03/2016 | 02:30

Emergency services inspect the area following a suicide bombing in a major shopping and tourist district in central Istanbul. Photo: Getty Images
Emergency services inspect the area following a suicide bombing in a major shopping and tourist district in central Istanbul. Photo: Getty Images

Yesterday's suicide bomb attack in Istanbul, in which at least two Irish citizens were injured, has again brought terrorist violence to the very heart of the Turkish republic.

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Coming only a week after a much deadlier suicide car bomb attack in Ankara, and following an upsurge in political and military violence last year, it suggests that the country is at risk of spiralling out of control.

Istiklal Caddesi, where yesterday's attack occurred, is to Istanbul something like what Grafton Street is to Dublin: a pedestrian thoroughway that plays an integral role in the city's life. Istanbul is too vast and sprawling to have a single central zone, but Istiklal is one of its pulse points. Almost everyone who has visited Istanbul will have walked it. For a suicide bomb to have detonated there will be almost unimaginably traumatic. It will not go unanswered; things are going to get worse.

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