An explosion on Istanbul’s popular pedestrian Istiklal Avenue on Sunday left people dead and injured, a senior official said.
Governor of Istanbul. Ali Yerlikaya tweeted that the explosion happened at about 16:20 (1320 GMT) and that there were dead and injured, but did not say how many. The cause of the explosion was unclear.
Turkey’s media watchdog has imposed a temporary media ban on reporting the explosion, meaning broadcasters cannot show videos of the time of the blast or its aftermath. The Supreme Radio and Television Board has imposed similar bans in the past, following attacks, accidents and some political issues.
A video posted online showed an eruption of flames and a loud bang, as pedestrians turned and fled.
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Other images showed ambulances, fire trucks and police at the scene. Social media users said the shops were closed and the avenue closed.
The broadcaster CNN Turk, in a first report, said that 11 people were injured. The avenue is a crowded thoroughfare popular with tourists and locals, surrounded by shops and restaurants.
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Turkey was hit by a series of deadly attacks between 2015 and 2017 by the Islamic State group and outlawed Kurdish groups.