ISTANBUL (AFP) – A banned radical Turkish Marxist group has retracted its claim for a suicide bombing in the heart of Istanbul’s tourist district, saying it did not carry out the attack that killed the bomber and one policeman.
Reports earlier this week suggested Tuesday’s attack was carried out by a Russian woman from the Muslim Caucasus region of Dagestan, and not the female bomber that the far-left militant group initially said had executed the strike.
“The attack on January 6 in Sultanahmet… was not carried out by our organisation,” the Marxist Revolutionary People’s Liberation Party-Front (DHKP-C) said in a statement on its website.
“We therefore withdraw our claim for the action. We apologise to our people and our supporters,” it said.
It said that the error was down to a “technical problem” that had arisen due to the need to keep internal communications to a minimum while living under “fascist conditions”.
Without giving further details, the group said that it had been preparing an action which would have coincided with the Sultanahmet attack.
Doubts were first raised when the mother of the suicide bomber named by the DHKP-C – Elif Sultan Kalsen – was taken to identify the corpse and said it was not her daughter.
Turkish private news agency DHA, without giving its sources, then said the bomber had been named as Russian citizen Diana Ramazanova (initially given as Ramazova) from the Russian region of Dagestan.