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Bombing Attack Kills At Least 10 People At Istanbul Airport

ROBERT SIEGEL, HOST:

And we have an update now on a developing story in Turkey. Ten people are dead and many wounded in what has been described as a bombing attack at the airport in Istanbul. Authorities there are still responding to what looks like an active situation, but NPR's national security correspondent Mary Louise Kelly is here to tell us what she knows so far. What can you tell us?

MARY LOUISE KELLY, BYLINE: Hi, Robert. As you said, the situation is still very much in flux. We know from Turkish authorities that at least 10 people appear to have been killed, upwards of 40 wounded. The Turkish justice minister says that they have recovered a suicide vest. He says that the attacker - and again we don't know how many but at least one attacker - opened fire with a rifle, also conflicting reports at how many explosions happened - in the neighborhood of one to three it sounds like and where exactly - whether this was already past the security checkpoints inside the terminal or maybe before you had crossed those checkpoints.

SIEGEL: We've seen lots of video images of smoke in the airport, security forces responding. What's known about the target of this attack?

KELLY: Well, it's interesting because this is Ataturk Airport which is the third busiest in Europe. It's only behind Heathrow in London and Charles de Gaulle in Paris. The security there is intense, and it's a huge blow for Turkey, as you would expect, of course, with a death toll like this. But also tourism there has suffered. Business travel is coming through there.

This is the latest in a string of attacks that have targeted both Istanbul and Ankara, the Turkish capital.

SIEGEL: Any indication yet of any claim of responsibility? ISIS, al-Qaida...

KELLY: No claim of responsibility. And, as you say, that's what makes the picture in Turkey so complicated because some of these recent attacks we just mentioned have been attributed to Kurdish militants, others to ISIS.

SIEGEL: It's NPR national security correspondent Mary Louise Kelly. Mary Louise, thanks.

KELLY: You're welcome. Transcript provided by NPR, Copyright NPR.