Panic in Istanbul as blast kills 6, Erdogan says 'smells like terror'| Top points
The Turkish state media watchdog RTUK has imposed a ban on broadcasting images of the attack. The Erdogan administration has also limited online discussion and slowed down the internet due to security reasons.
Turkey, one of Middle East's biggest economies, was rocked by a bomb attack at a busy tourist place in Istanbul, killing six people and injuring 53. Frightening images and videos circulating on social media showed fear-stricken tourists running for cover after the Istiklal street was covered with thick smoke after the blasts.
Turkish president Recep Tayyip Erdogan said the initial findings pointed to an act of terror, and vowed to punish the perpetrators. The police have cordoned off the affected area as healthcare services have been pressed to treat the victims.
Here are five important developments unfolding in Istanbul's commercial area which has been hit by the suspected terror attack after a long gap of six years.
1. According to a Bloomberg report, an attack might have been carried out by a woman who was spotted running away after leaving a parcel on a bench moments before the explosion.
2. The Turkish state media watchdog RTUK has imposed a ban on broadcasting images of the attack. The Erdogan administration has also limited online discussion and slowed down the internet due to security reasons.
3. According to images doing rounds on social media, a black crater was visible after the explosions rocked the Turkish capital. The police have established a large security cordon to prevent access to the damaged area for fear of a second explosion.
4. The video footage obtained by Reuters showed the moment the blast occurred at 4.13 p.m local time, sending debris into the air and leaving several people lying on the ground, while others fled the scene.
5. A helicopter flew above the scene and a number of ambulances were parked in nearby Taksim Square. The Turkish Red Crescent said blood was being transferred to nearby hospitals.
(With Reuters, AFP, AP & Bloomberg inputs)