Blast rocks Turkish city of Istanbul

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SHAFAQNA – At least 10 people have been killed and 15 injured on a historic central square in Istanbul, Turkish authorities said. Local media reported that a suicide bomber blew himself up near a group of tourists.

Among the injured are tourists from Germany and Norway, CNN Turk reported.

Istanbul authorities are investigating the incident and the type of the explosives used in the blast, the governor’s office said.

The explosion took place on Sultanahmet Square. It occurred close to the Sultanahmet tram stop and Dikilitas, the Obelisk of Theodosius, in the heart of Istanbul’s tourist district.

Ankara issued this morning a media ban for all foreign press.

Erdem Koroglu, who was working at a nearby office at the time of the explosion, told NTV he saw several people lying on the ground following the blast.

“It was difficult to say who was alive or dead,” Koroglu said. “Buildings rattled from the force of the explosion.”

One woman who works at a nearby antiques store told Reuters that the explosion was very loud.

“We shook a lot. We ran out and saw body parts,” she said.

“We’re taking precautions against a second explosion,” a police officer said.

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