Police facilities in Ankara targeted in rocket attack

Published 21.09.2013 10:14
Updated 21.09.2013 10:35

Two police buildings in Ankara were the target of a rocket attack on Friday night. No one died in the attack however; one of the perpetrators was killed by police fire in a chase down following the incident, while another perpetrator was apprehended heavily wounded.

On Friday night at approximately ten p.m., rockets struck an annex building and a residence facility belonging to the Directorate of Security in Ankara. There were no casualties in the attack; however, one of the suspected perpetrators was killed in a shoot down with police, while a second suspect was apprehended heavily wounded.

The suspects arrived to Çetin Emeç Boulevard Friday night at nine-thirty and proceeded to strike a new annex building constructed in the garden space behind the Security Directorate as well as a police residence building. The residence building was struck by one rocket on the first floor while the annex building, which is used as a social services facility, was struck on the third floor by a second rocket. A third rocket was also set off however; it is stated to have it the ground. The buildings incurred material damage, however no one was killed in the strikes.

Immediately after the incident, a significant number of security forces were dispatched to the scene and an air and ground operation ensued in order to track down the perpetrators. Two police helicopters and a significant number of police vehicles were used in the search. As helicopters flew over the capital's Middle East Technical University (ODTÜ), they noticed in the reconnaissance flight that two individuals appeared to be running from the scene on foot in the forest. One suspect was killed as police tried to apprehend the suspects, while the other was arrested heavily wounded. According to the information obtained, the suspects were carrying hand grenades and guns.

The perpetrator that was killed on the scene was identified as Muharrem Karataş, a member of the far leftist terrorist group the Revolutionary People's Liberation Party/Front (DHKP/C). It turns out Karataş was also the perpetrator of another rocket attack which targeted the ruling Justice and Development (AK) Party headquarters on March 19. The DHKP/C is also said to be responsible for staging a suicide attack against the American Embassy in February. The second perpetrator from last night's attack on police facilities that was heavily wounded in a chase down by security officials has been identified as Serdar Polat.

ÇELİK: I CONDEMN THIS ATTACK

Interior Minister Muammer Güler quickly arrived to inspect the scene last night. Responding to a question by reporters regarding a piece of cloth found on the scene and if they knew which organization it could be attributed to, Güler stated, "That doesn't matter right now. It could have been left on the scene to mislead police."

AK Party Deputy Chairman Hüseyin Çelik also responded to last night's attack by stating, "I condemn this attack staged by terrorists on police facilities. Mustafa Varank, an advisor to Prime Minister Erdoğan, also commented on the attack on Twitter by stating, "When illegal organizations were unable to get what they want out of street riots, they resorted to using weapons."

Main opposition Republican People's Party (CHP) Group Deputy Chairman Muharrem İnce also commented on the attack on Twitter, by writing, "A rocket attack has been staged in the center of Ankara, on one of its busiest streets and in a location very close to the parliament! Where is our intelligence service?"

This is a translation of an article originally written by Alper Sancar.

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