Ankara suicide bomber's father visited PKK camps to bring back son
by Anadolu Agency
ANKARA Feb 25, 2016 - 12:00 am GMT+3
by Anadolu Agency
Feb 25, 2016 12:00 am
The father of the Ankara suicide bomber visited PKK camps in northern Iraq four times to "bring his son back home," according to police testimony obtained by Anadolu Agency.
The suicide bomber behind last week's deadly blast was identified as Abdülbaki Sömer, according to prosecution sources Tuesday.
According to testimony given by Musa Sömer on Sunday, Abdülbaki Sömer "went missing in September 2005".
"My son told me he would go to Van to renew his high school enrollment. I did not hear from him for two days after that. That's when I went to the police to report my son missing," the father said.
Sömer said that they had close relatives in northern Iraq, whom he visited occasionally, and he also visited PKK camps four times in an attempt "to convince my son to come back home."
Asked if anyone accompanied him during these visits, Somer said he did not tell anyone about it, and he visited the camps alone, driving in a taxi from Dohuk in northern Iraq.
"I was hoping to find my son and bring him back home.
"I visited the camps four times, and each time, showed my son's photo to the armed men securing the entrance, who told me they never saw him," Sömer said.
He said that he had failed to find any information or evidence regarding his son's whereabouts since 2005. However, prosecution sources say Abdülbaki Sömer reportedly joined the terrorist PKK organization at the age of 16 in 2005 and was based in the Qandil mountains - the PKK base in northern Iraq-until 2014.
Asked how he found out that his son was behind the Ankara blast, Sömer said he was suspicious when he saw some media reports showing the photo of an alleged bomber, who "looked like [my] son".
"That's also how I learned that he used the code name 'Zinar'. But I didn't tell anyone anything. My relatives also got suspicious after seeing the reports and even told me: "My condolences to you. He looks like Abdülbaki," he said.
The terrorist attack in the Turkish capital on Feb. 17 claimed 29 lives. The blast, which targeted military buses, also left dozens wounded.
The identity of the bomber was revealed by a DNA test, which confirmed that the samples provided by Sömer's father matched the assailant.
Sömer's father, who lives in the eastern province of Van, had informed police that his son was behind the attack.
Currently, 15 suspects are in custody in relation to the vehicle-borne suicide attack.
The explosives-laden hire car used in the blast was stolen in Izmir, western Turkey.