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Authorities urged to investigate Ankara peace rally bombing

Demonstrators hold portraits of those killed by Saturday's suicide bombings as they attend a commemoration in Ankara, 13 October 2015
Demonstrators hold portraits of those killed by Saturday's suicide bombings as they attend a commemoration in Ankara, 13 October 2015

REUTERS/Umit Bektas

This statement was originally published on hrw.org on 12 October 2015.

Human Rights Watch expresses sincere condolences to the relatives and friends of all those who died in Saturday's double suicide bombing in Ankara. The authorities must pursue a full investigation into this appalling act of violence which at the time of writing has killed over 95 people and injured at least 187 others who were assembling for a peace rally, organized in the capital by two trade union confederations and civil society groups.

All efforts should be made to identify perpetrators behind the attacks and bring them to justice, and to examine all possible security and intelligence failings which led to the biggest attack on civilians in Turkey's modern history, said Human Rights Watch.

The attack on Saturday comes weeks before Turkey's November 1 general election. Two earlier bomb attacks also targeted supporters of the Kurdish political movement and the left. Two days before the June 7 general election a bomb attack on a Peoples' Democracy Party election rally in the southeast city of Diyarbakır caused four deaths, and a July 20 suicide bombing of a gathering of students and activists in the southeast town of Suruç left 33 dead. There are no known advances in the investigation into either attack, although the government has indicated that the extremist group Islamic State (also known as ISIS) may be responsible.

Click here to read this statement in Turkish.

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