Israel to repatriate citizens wounded in Istanbul blast


Jerusalem (AFP)

Israel on Saturday sent two planes to Turkey to bring home citizens wounded in a suicide bombing in central Istanbul that killed four people, the emergency medical service said.

Turkish media late Saturday reported that three Israelis and one Iranian were killed in the blast.

"The aim of the operation is to repatriate wounded Israelis as fast as possible," a Magen David Adom spokesperson said.

A foreign ministry spokesman said at least 11 Israelis were wounded in Saturday morning's attack, including two who were in a grave condition.

Broadcaster CNN-Turk named the Israelis reported killed as Simha Siman Demri, 60, Yonathan Suher, 40 and Avraham Goldman, 70.

Turkey's deputy health minister had earlier named Simha Demri as one of the four people killed in the attack that also wounded 36 people.

The bombing targeted Istiklal Caddesi, a pedestrian thoroughfare that is usually crowded but was still relatively quiet when the bomber struck at around 11:00 am (0900 GMT).

No group has yet claimed responsibility for the attack, but pro-government newspapers blamed it on the Islamic State (IS) group.