34 people arrested after an attack in an Istanbul court that left three dead, including two attackers

Police officers stand guard outside the Caglayan court after a shooting in Istanbul, Turkey. February 6, 2024 (REUTERS/Murad Sezer) (Murad Sezer/)

The Turkish police arrested this Tuesday 34 people in the course of the investigation of the attack today against the Palace of Justice in Istanbulin which two attackers and a citizen died, in addition to six wounded, three of them police officers.

“At the moment 34 people have been arrested, and the investigation continues,” said the Minister of Justice, Yilmaz Tuncin a meeting with the press, broadcast live on the network NTV.

He confirmed that the two assailants, A Man and a Womantried to enter the Çaglayan Courthouse in Istanbul around 11:30 local time (8:30 GMT) and engaged in a shootout with the police, who ended up killing both of them.

During the shooting, three police officers and four civilians were injured, of which one, a middle-aged woman died shortly after.

The injured are hospitalized but none of them are in danger of dying and the police officers are “fine,” the minister said.

He added that both assailants had background for his activity: the man had served a 15-year prison sentence, which ended with his release on supervised release in 2020, and the woman had a 4-year prison sentence, appealed to the Supreme Court.

Security agents check the place where two attackers were killed outside a court, in Istanbul, Turkey, on February 6, 2024 (AP Photo/Francisco Seco)
Security agents check the place where two attackers were killed outside a court, in Istanbul, Turkey, on February 6, 2024 (AP Photo/Francisco Seco) (Francisco Seco/)

Videos broadcast by the state news agency Anadolu They showed the attackers appearing to shoot at the police until they were shot down in the forecourt of the building while those present ran for cover.

Tunç described the assailants as “terrorists” but did not specify their membership in any specific group.

The press has identified the attackers as militants allegedly linked to the radical left group DHKP-C, that in past decades it carried out numerous attacks in Turkey, although the last ones took place in 2015.

Tunç indirectly confirmed this link by remembering that attack by the DHKP-C in 2015, in which two armed young men entered the same Palace of Justice in Istanbul and took a prosecutor hostage, who died along with his captors in the shooting. triggered by police intervention.

The Marxist-Leninist-oriented DHKP-C was founded in 1994 as an heir to the Marxist movements of the 1970s and is Turkey’s main leftist armed organization outside the Kurdish sphere.

The court building Caglayan o Istanbul Palace of Justice is a Huge, heavily guarded complex in the Kagithane district. It was the largest court building in Europe when it opened in 2011.

The private agency DHA reported that the older sister of the female attacker appeared as a defendant in court half an hour after the attack. She was accused of belonging to a terrorist organization and possession of dangerous materials.

The attack occurred on the day Türkiye commemorated the first anniversary of an earthquake which killed more than 53,000 people in the south of the country.

The DHKP/C has been virtually inactive in recent years. In March 2015, the group took a prosecutor hostage in the same court and demanded details about the police killing of a teenager during anti-government protests the previous year.

Two gunmen died when authorities raided the building and the prosecutor later died from his injuries.

In February 2013, the group claimed responsibility for a suicide attack at the US embassy in Ankara that killed a Turkish security guard and wounded four other people.

(With information from EFE and AP)