The outlawed Kurdistan Workers’ Party (PKK) on Monday denied any role in a deadly attack in İstanbul on Sunday, which claimed the lives of six people and injured dozens of others, Agence France-Presse reported.
“Our people and the democratic public know closely that we are not related to this incident, that we will not directly target civilians and that we do not accept actions targeting civilians,” the group said in a statement published by the Fırat news agency.
Fırat is close to the PKK, which is listed as a terror group by Turkey and its Western allies.
Earlier in the day, Turkey put the blame on the PKK for the deadly explosion.
Interior Minister Süleyman Soylu announced in televised remarks that a Syrian woman linked to the Kurdish militant groups in northern Syria has been arrested in connection to the attack while he pointed to the PKK as the mastermind of the deadly explosion.
“According to our findings, the PKK terrorist organization is responsible,” Soylu said.
The PKK has waged a deadly insurgency for Kurdish self-rule in southeastern Turkey since the 1980s.
Meanwhile, Syria’s Kurdish-led Syrian Democratic Forces (SDF) also denied Monday any role in the bomb attack in İstanbul. “Our forces had nothing to do with the Istanbul bombing,” said Mazloum Abdi, chief commander of the US-allied SDF.
The SDF is the de facto army of the semi-autonomous Kurdish administration in northeastern Syria. It provided crucial assistance to a US-led coalition against the Islamic State in Iraq and the Levant (ISIL) terrorist group.