ANKARA, Turkey — A bomb went off at an outdoor wedding in southeastern Turkey on Saturday, causing multiple casualties, officials said.
Gaziantep Province Gov. Ali Yerlikaya said the blast during the wedding in the city of Gaziantep, near the border with Syria, was a terror attack.
Mehmet Erdoğan, a ruling party legislator from Gaziantep, said authorities believe it was most probably a suicide bomb attack that could have been the work of either Kurdish militants or Islamic State group extremists.
Turkey has been rocked by a wave of attacks in the past year that have either been claimed by Kurdish militants linked to the outlawed Kurdistan Workers’ Party — known by its acronym PKK — or were blamed upon.
The attack comes as the country is still reeling from last month’s failed coup attempt which the government has blamed on U.S.-based Muslim cleric Fethullah Gülen.
Deputy Prime Minister Mehmet Şimşek, interviewed on NTV television, said: “This was a barbaric attack. It appears to be a suicide attack. All terror groups, the PKK, Daesh, the (Gülen movement) are targeting Turkey. But God willing, we will overcome.” Daesh is an Arabic name for the IS group.
Mehmet Taşcıoğlu, a local journalist, told NTV television, that the huge explosion could be heard from many parts of the city.